Thrive Through the Holidays! A Dietitians Guide to having your pie and eating it too!
By now, most people are revving up for the Holidays. Presents, parties, people, goodies…..Oh my! How will I get through it all? Is that what you are thinking? Holiday weight gain starts even before the store decorations appear. The season kicks off with Halloween, when people usually start thinking ‘holidays ‘ the day after the massive candy haul. The stores begin playing Christmas music and tauntingly throw their extra Halloween candy on the clearance shelves. But, have no fear…
HERE ARE 10 SMART TIPS TO PUT INTO PLAY, AS SOON AS YOU READ THEM.
- Think and eat mindfully! Focus on chewing your food well, and enjoying the smell, taste, and texture of it. Don’t pop mindless calories in your mouth. Every bite you take mindfully, could be an ounce you save. Using mindfulness whenever you are eating, will not only ease some stress, but you may end up eating less food.
- If what you want is a steady stream of energy to get through those Christmas “to do” lists, munch down on a nutrient dense diet, not calorie dense. This will give you steady energy, balanced mood, sufficient antioxidants for cell repair, and restore the body, so you can party.
- Use smaller plates, such as a luncheon plate for meals and parties. A normal portion on a 10 inch plate, looks huge on a smaller dinner plate. Cutting down on the size of the serving utensil will serve smaller portions without anyone realizing it.
- Mingle, mingle! Think about ways to enjoy yourself by mingling rather than hanging around the buffet table. Time to spruce up your conversation skills!
- During the holiday season, we all seem to squeeze our normal routine, plus extra holiday doings into what little time we have. Because of this, healthy meals seem to be a second, or third thought. Skip the drive-through. Do some meal prep and batch cooking on the weekends, or whatever day works for you. You’ll save money for those awesome gifts, and feel great, mentally and physically.
- Take control before the holiday comes, make goals, and have a plan. If you want a successful, weight gain free holiday, don’t just make the plan, follow it! Eating a light snack with some protein, is a good strategy before going to any party, or gathering. You won’t go into the party ravenous, and want to eat everything you see on the buffet table.
- Don’t go shopping hungry. Have a snack with protein before you leave to buy your goodies. If you find yourself hungry while shopping, go to a sit down restaurant where it is easier to make wise food choices.
- After your holiday meals, take a walk with someone. It’s a way to spend some good quality time with them. Plus, walking after a meal is also the best way to lower blood sugar quickly. In order to avoid the holiday 5 (pounds that is), choose foods wisely.
- Fill your plate with the less calorie dense foods first, such as salads, veggies, and lean proteins. Take smaller portions of the more calorie dense foods. This way you get filled on the lower calorie foods first.
- By making some realistic goals ahead of time, before you get into the chaotic season, will help you to stick to them. Build a goal around your workout routine, to be sure it continues. If an adjustment is necessary in your eating, or workout routine, revise it in advance, not on the spot. This way you’re sure to be honest with yourself about your goal. It’s also a good idea if you set some goals around holiday drinking and “me” time.
There are only good and bad habits, not good and bad foods. It’s really all about your choices. What food, how much, and when you eat it. This is where mindfulness can come into play.
Have a Healthy and Active Holiday Season!
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