Healthy Holiday Habits
The holiday season doesn't have to equal weight gain. Here are some healthy habits that are easy to follow during the holidays to keep you on the right track to a healthier lifestyle!
Keep a food diary. If you write down what you eat, it will make you think twice about overindulging.
Be aware of beverages. Alcoholic drinks are easily 100–300 calories or more per serving. Plus, drinking reduces inhibitions (which will make it harder to resist tempting foods) and can give you a hangover (which will probably lead to not exercising the following day). Eggnog (with or without alcohol) is one of the highest calorie beverages in existence. A better option could be wine spritzers or naturally flavored seltzer water. If you must drink, try drinking a large glass of water between each drink to help you fill up and slow down your rate of drinking.
Snack on produce before you go to a party. Filling up on produce will boost your diet quality along with keeping you from arriving at a party so hungry that you can’t make healthy choices.
Focus on enjoyable aspects of the holiday season other than eating. Examples include socializing, dancing, playing a game, etc. You can enjoy foods that you don’t normally have without overstuffing yourself. The truth is that this season is really about enjoying the company of family and friends.
Bring a healthy dish to a party so that you know you will have at least one good food option. Roasted vegetables pack a lot of flavor without the fat and calories of other traditional holiday staples like mashed potatoes or green bean casserole.
Exercise, exercise, exercise. It has been proven that people tend to eat healthier when they exercise. Staying active will keep your calorie burning level high and remind you of your health and fitness goals through the holiday season. If you feel like you don’t have time, think about not saying yes to every party, squeezing in a shorter workout and planning when you will fit in exercise the day before. Part of staying consistent with exercise is making it a higher priority.
Think about giving non-food-related gifts. How many of us have been given a box of chocolates or plate of cookies that ends up at the office because we don’t want to be ‘tempted?’ Great, it’s out of the house, but what about all your co-workers that are trying to eat well too?
Remember, being mindful of your eating habits during this time of year will help you enjoy the holidays without compromising your healthy progress!