It’s that time of year when families come together and enjoy the holidays. Some have their own personal traditions that they follow, while others float from house to house, paying a visit or dropping gifts to everyone they can think of. The one thing, besides gifts, that most locations will have in common is food, and an abundance of it. If you’ve been trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, this can wreak havoc on your diet, but it does not have to. Check out these 10 Tips for a Healthy Holiday:
1. Stand Further Away From Snacks
If there are finger foods like chips or M&M’s. try to stand further away. In the midst of conversing, it is easy to be tempted to just reach over and grab a handful. Purposely positioning yourself further away helps to reduce this urge, as you wouldn’t usually end your chat just to grab chips, would you?
2. Plan Time for Exercise
Exercise helps reduce the stress of the holidays, and also prevents weight gain. Try to moderately increase your exercise routines to compensate for the extra eating that you may do. A 10 to 15 minute brisk walk twice a daily would be a great start. Try adding a Fitbit One to track your progress.
3. If You Overeat at One Meal Go Light on the Next
With so many delicious options spread out, I know it can be hard to watch your consumption. If you go heavy the first go around, and you must have seconds, go light. Perhaps a slice of pie or some celery sticks would satisfy that craving.
4. Bring a Healthy Dish to Holiday Gatherings
If you’re preparing a dish, make sure yours is healthy. Try something with whole grains, vegetables, beans, or fresh fruit. This at least guarantees that you’ll have at least one healthy dish to chose from at pot luck parties.
5. Practice Healthy Holiday Cooking
Similar to the step above, this applies in general. Preparing favorite dishes lower in fat and calories will help promote healthy holiday eating. Try to incorporate healthy ideas into mom’s traditional holiday recipes to make them healthier.
6. Get Your Sleep
Sleep deprivation can contribute to weight gain, cloudy thinking, and diminished immune health. Between activities, try to get as much sleep as possible. If you don’t have any plans on a specific night, try going to bed a little bit earlier. A hot bath and BattleCreek Bedwarmer definitely does the trick for me.
7. Keep Your Body Active During Gatherings
Walk around and mingle, or stand up while socializing. When your favorite songs play, dance away some calories. This kind of activity adds up and helps to negate some of your food and drink choices.
8. Tame Your Appetite Before Parties
Try snacking on a fruit salad before supper. Those raw carrots and celery sticks would also be a great healthy snack to nibble on. This will help tame your appetite before the main course arrives, allowing you to eat less.
9. Indulge in Holiday Favorites
I would never say to stay away from Aunt Betty’s once a year Peach Cobbler, or Grandma’s seasonal Boston Cream Pies, as they’re to die for. However, if you are going to partake in these amazing desserts, try to limit your intake of chips or cookies, and other items that are readily available year round.
10. Don’t Drink and Drive
Drinking and driving is a definitely a NO NO! Alcohol also comes with additional calories. Consuming too much alcohol can also impair your judgement, making you feel the need to consume more food. Try carrying a Breathometer Breathalyzer for your Smart Phone to check you alcohol consumption.
The holidays are a time that you should be able to enjoy. Living a healthy lifestyle does not mean that the fun has to stop. It simply means that you have to plan accordingly. Have a Happy, Safe, and Healthy Holiday!