Tips for eating healthy during the holidays
10 Tips for Eating Healthy During the Holidays
Ohhh, the holidays. Filled with joy, wonderful sites, smells, and of course, lots and lots of eating. It can be hard to stay on track with healthy eating habits when holiday food is a continuous temptation. We’re not saying, skip out on all food this time of year. That would be impossible and truthfully just not fair to your taste buds… or your soul. So, to solve this dilemma we wanted to put together a few tricks and tips to help you navigate all of that delicious holiday food without completely letting your health slip.
#1 Load Up On Fiber
Sure, you’re looking forward to that holiday party buffet. Maybe you even skipped a meal to ensure you would have plenty of room for food. This may seem like a bright idea, but in reality, it’s not the best. You will be far more likely to overeat, which will cause you to feel a bit sluggish and lead to a bad habit of often overindulging. Instead, grab an apple or snack on some veggies leading up to your holiday event. Apples and most veggies are filled with fiber to keep your belly feeling fuller longer. When you are tempted by all of the holiday food in front of you, you will be less likely to overdo it.
#2 Bring Your Own Dish
Sharing is caring, right? This year, why not share one of your favorite dishes but with a healthy spin? The holidays bring out emotional eating because those traditional holiday dishes and recipes passed down have sentimental meaning, we get it. But, perhaps you could tweak a few ingredients to help everyone out with their health this holiday season. For example, try swapping out healthier alternatives like replacing noodles with zoodles, using almond flour instead of regular flour, or replacing unhealthy oils and butter with avocado oil or applesauce. Once you start doing a little research, you will find plenty of healthy alternatives to create a healthier version of your favorite holiday dishes.
#3 Circle the Buffet First
That’s right, you read that correctly. Do a nice full look around the food options before you dive in. This way, you will have a good idea of your options instead of simply going down the food line adding everything to your plate. You may find one dish you think you will want a little extra of and one that you may not want at all, helping you gauge what you really need on your plate vs. what you just slopped on because it was in front of you.
#4 Grab a Smaller Plate
You’ve probably heard the saying, “your eyes are bigger than your stomach.” Well, it’s true, which is why following tips one through three will help you here. In addition, opt. for a smaller plate size. Your eyes are going to tell you to grab the mega plate, but ignore that thought and grab the smaller one. By using a small plate, you will inevitably eat less because your mind will think you have plenty when your plate is full, even though it’s a smaller plate. So fill that small plate up and play a sneaky trick on your mind… and stomach.
# 5 Fill Up with Veggies
We know there are lots of tasty treats during the holidays. But this doesn’t mean you completely skimp over the fruits and veggies. Take this opportunity to add them to your plate too. Your fruit and veggie portions will be the ones you add to your plate after you’ve scoped out your must-have dishes. Take a small portion of those must-haves and fill the rest with fruit and veggies. If it helps, snack on the fruit and veggie options before your main meal. This way, you are already a little full before you eat.
# 6 Slow Down During Meals
We know it’s good. And you’ve probably been thinking about this feast for a while, but remember eating should not be a marathon. You are no longer a kid playing the “who can finish their plate faster” game. This is your time to savor the flavor. Take it all in. The smells, the sites, and the delicious flavors that make the holidays so enjoyable. This is your time to look up and around you while you're eating and cherish these moments where family and friends come together to share a meal.
# 7 Take a Few Minutes Before Getting Seconds
When your plate is empty, don’t rush in for seconds. It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to inform your brain that you are full. If you jump up too soon, you will be overeating, not realizing you are actually already full. Instead, wait at least another ten minutes before you even think about eating more. Take this time to have a conversation with those around you. Then check back in with yourself and see if you really are hungry for more. Chances are, the delicious meal will have hit you, and you will recognize that you are indeed full. PLUS, this way maybe you will save a little room for dessert.
# 8 Take a Walk
Who says you can’t get a little walk in at the holiday party? After your meal and maybe before dessert, grab your grandma, your aunt, or whoever else wants to join to walk off that meal. It’s the perfect time to get in some catching up with family and to get your bodies moving. Better yet, turn up the tunes and start a holiday dance party. There’s no better way to burn some calories, and dancing just makes you feel good.
# 9 Use Supplements
You know you will be eating more during the holidays, plus there may be a little added stress during this time of year, which is only natural. This is why it is super important to get in those vitamins and minerals you may not be getting from your diet. Adding in a high-quality supplement during the holiday season will help you stress less and stay on top of your health with the proper nutrients to keep you energized and healthy all winter long. Check out some of our favorite supplements here.
# 10 Remember What’s Important
Why is it important to you to keep a healthy mind and body? What’s your motivation? Tap in with your WHY and hold on to it tight during times of stress and temptation during the holidays. Remember, what matters most is spending quality time with friends and family and ensuring your health is YOUR PRIORITY.
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