How to enjoy the buffet and eat healthy too!

Guest Blogger: Chef Tina Martini

TinaKitchenblogIf you don't know me yet, I'm Chef Tina Martini (yes, that's my REAL name) and I have the only live cooking show here in Las Vegas - Martini Time with Chef Tina Martini at M Resort. The show is similar to a network television cooking show and mixes cooking with nutrition, fitness and wellness for a deliciously entertaining and educational experience.

The show treats a live studio audience to cooking demonstrations, food and beverage sampling and special "handy hints" and "tasty tips" on a variety of topics centering on three key areas of living healthy: nutrition, fitness and mind/body. The live studio is located inside our award-winning Studio B Buffet and as a result, one question I am often asked is: How do I eat a balanced and nutritious meal in a buffet? There are so many options and there's just so much of it!

Remember that just because we love to eat does not mean we are doomed to become overweight or unhealthy. I always refer back to a saying that is more than 5,000 years old: "The intelligent person remembering the pain of disease, should take food which is suitable to him, and in its proper quantity and timing." - Charaka (one of the first physicians on record)

I'm sure you'll agree it's not so much what we eat, as it is how much we eat and when we eat it. Like anything else in life, just because it's available to you doesn't mean you have to overindulge. Take a walk around the buffet to see what is there then grab a plate and make your selections. Always keep in mind the three bite rule - after three bites of anything the palate is saturated with those flavors. Take a three bite portion of something else and before you know it your plate is full of beautiful small portions. You've tasted exactly what you found appealing and didn't waste any of your stomach space on things that don't appeal to you.

StudioBblogHow much you eat also relates to how often - while we shouldn't overindulge, it's okay to at least indulge from time to time. Having foods that many consider "bad" for you is okay when done occasionally. It's when we're eating those foods on a regular basis that we get into trouble with our health and weight. Remember that when you eat is important too - we should think of food as fuel and if we're eating and eating and not also being active, that food goes from fuel to fat.

Finally remember your goal is to keep the digestive track strong and as stress-free as possible. Here's what I always say, "Don't eat with people you don't like!" Stress does more damage to our health than any amount of bad food ever would. If you eat when you're unhappy or eat because you're unhappy, poor health and weight gain are almost guaranteed. So have fun, use food for fuel, and be the example of a food lover who stays healthy and successfully maintains your weight!

Martini Time with Chef Tina Martini runs Thursday through Sunday with shows at noon and 4 p.m. Tickets are just $39.95 and include the live cooking show with food sampling plus reserved seating for Lunch inside Studio B Buffet. Tickets are available at, by calling 800-745-3000 and can also be purchased 8am-10pm at the iMagine Rewards Center at M Resort.