For weight control and improved health, follow these strategies to keep your sugar intake to a minimum while still relishing the sweetness of the season.

Q: I have prediabetes and have mostly avoided sugar in my diet this year. But during the holidays, I know I will likely want to splurge on an occasional seasonal dessert that I can’t get any other time of year. Do you have any advice on how to enjoy a taste of holiday treats but still mostly abstain from eating sugar?

At this time of year, we’re bombarded with the sights and smells of addictive sugary foods and beverages. Candied yams. Gingerbread. Egg nog. Apple pie. Christmas cookies and other home-baked goodies. Chocolates. Pumpkin pie. … If we aren’t careful, one sugar-loaded indulgence can lead to another and another—then some of us give into sugar for the whole season and end up sicker and heavier before the new year even begins.

More than 50 percent of Americans are estimated to be prediabetic or diabetic, and more than 60 percent of Americans over age 40 are likely to have prediabetes. Insulin resistance, which is at the core of prediabetes, doesn’t just significantly increase your risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes, but also your risk of cardiovascular disease, some types of cancer, dementia, and depression. Keeping this information in mind, most of us should limit our sugar intake. Intellectually speaking, we may know this, but practically speaking, it’s not easy to stick to eating low sugar during the holidays.