Tips for Healthy Holiday Eating
It is easy to lose focus on being healthy during this time of the year. Use these tips and tricks to keep yourself feeling happy and healthy during the busy season.
- Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain. A moderate and daily increase in exercise can help partially offset increased holiday eating. Try to get in a 10- or 15-minute brisk walk.
- Don’t skip meals. Before leaving for a party, eat a light snack like raw vegetables or a piece of fruit to curb your appetite. You will be less tempted to over-indulge.
- Survey party buffets before filling your plate. Choose your favorite foods and skip your least favorite. Include vegetables and fruits FIRST to keep your plate balanced.
- Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed. Savor your favorite holiday treats while eating small portions. Sit down, get comfortable, and enjoy.
- Be careful with beverages. Alcohol can lessen inhibitions and induce overeating; non-alcoholic beverages can be full of calories and sugar.
- If you overeat at one meal go light on the next. It takes 500 calories per day (or 3,500 calories per week) above your normal/maintenance consumption to gain one pound. It is not about one meal, but your overall eating habits.
- Take the focus off of food. Turn candy and cookie-making time into non-edible projects like making wreaths, dough art decorations or a gingerbread house. Plan group activities with family and friends that are not all about food. Try serving a holiday meal to the community, playing games or going on a walking tour of decorated homes.