TODAY   |  December 12, 2013

Get creative with your holiday diet

TODAY nutritionist Joy Bauer shows how three people were able to keep off weight during the holidays through a number of creative ways.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> okay. so for a lot of us, the holiday season is the most difficult time of year when it comes to eating healthy and resisting temptation.

>> joy bower is here. she has incredible weight loss strategies, three people who lost a combined 590 pound. the amount of weight these people lost. let's start first with jennifer butter, she turned 50 years agor-years-old, mother of five. she weighed originally 410 pound. what made her lose weight ?

>> in this picture she started eating in response to a whole cascade of negative events. she lost both parents. she lost her father-in-law. she was really unhappy and miserable in her community. she felt very uncomfortable. so the turning point was, a sad story, her husband surprised herd and her five kids, went to a local restaurant as a treat. she could not fit into the armchair. so she was ashamed. she was humiliated. to make matters even worse the workers were laughing and really making her feel very small. she remembered she cried through the whole meal. but the amazing thing is, she took that negative experience and she enabled it to fuel pure positive. she woke up in the morning. she started a weight loss plan. she was able in three years to drop 262 pound.

>> wow, look at her now. 148 pound. she looks like a completely different person.

>> not the same person.

>> she is happy. she is thriving. she is really active on facebook. she helps so many people lose weight . she has a super cool strategies. when she hits a buffet, she manages it with a one-two punch. she makes if commitment first she fills a plate just with produce, vegetables, salad, fruit. she gobbles that down and takes the edge off the hunger. then she lets herself have a second plate of small portions of whatever she wants. i love that.

>> 56-years-old from nurnlgs howard.

>> howard is a longstanding friend of mean. he has always been through thick and thin this great big lovable bear. at his heaviest he was 388 pounds.

>> let's take a quick look at him now.

>> he has knocked off 218 pounds.

>> whoa.

>> oh my gosh.

>> unbelievable.

>> you can see his eyes. he has great eyes.

>> he's a new grandpa now. his secret is before he hits the party. he makes sure he has a strategic snack. something under 200 calories with phoeber and protein. it helps to take the edge off. all of these snacks fit the bill.

>> she is 35 in seattle.

>> rosie at 300 pounds. her daughter was ebony was her motivator. she knocked off, are you ready, 110 pounds like a little super modem. here she is.

>> what's her trick?

>> talk about this.

>> she gave herself the opportunity every single day for her favorite treat and by knowing that she had that, there wasn't deprivation.

>> it enabled her.

>> one treat a day.

>> she downsized to a fun size candy bar . now she does a healthier granola.

>> we have a party later, so i'm going to start snacking right now.

>> got to go. back in a moment. this is "today" on nbc. .

>> jesse is from avon. they have been so good over the years. what have you