By Karina Hammer, Certified Health & Wellness Coach
It’s that time of the year again! It’s time to celebrate the holidays with parties, get-togethers, corporate dinners, and of course the endless family celebrations. While the holidays can sneak up on us, every year doesn’t mean the pounds have to follow. The average American will gain 7-10 pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Now, don’t let that happen to you this holiday season. Temptations will be knocking at every door. Friends giving you boxes of chocolate or bottles of wine, Grandma’s homemade warm apple pie (and don’t forget the ice cream), Aunt Martha’s cheesy potato casserole, and even grocers putting out their array of colorful and mouth-watering cookies, pies, and exquisite holiday pastries are just the beginning. However, there is no need to deprive your taste buds this holiday season. Instead, try something new this year. Make your New Year’s resolution before the holidays even begin.
Resolution: Making this holiday season, a season full of making compromises and better choices for a healthier you.
Follow these healthy eating tips and look and feel your best during the holidays.
Top 10 Healthy Holiday Tips:
- Don’t make a meal with the appetizers. Remember that appetizer is “any small portion that stimulates a desire for more”. Take one or two and wait for the second course, which will help you avoid overeating.
- Plan ahead. Eat lighter meals on the days you have a holiday party to attend. Snack on nuts, fruits and vegetables before heading out the door.
- If you’re the host, send your guests away with some leftovers. This lets them enjoy something at home and save you from eating all of the leftovers yourself.
- On average, it takes your stomach 20 minutes to produce hormones that tell your brain you’re full. So, eat slowly and you’ll feel full faster with less food. This is a good tip for any meal, not just during the holidays.
- Socialize away from the buffet, dessert table, or even the candy dish. We tend to eat more if the temptation is right in front of us.
- Keep moving. Take your family or dog for a nice brisk walk before or after dinner.
- Stay hydrated with the legendary H2O. Limit your soda, alcohol and caffeine consumption. Alcohol can lessen inhibitions and induce overeating; non-alcoholic beverages can be full of calories and sugar.
- Take the focus off 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 aren’t all about food. Try serving a holiday meal to the community, playing games or going on a walking tour of decorated homes.
- Bring your own healthy dish to a holiday gathering.
- Practice Healthy Holiday Cooking. Preparing favorite dishes with more fresh fruits and vegetables, and making it from scratch will help promote healthy holiday eating.
Enjoy the holidays, plan a time for activity, incorporate healthy recipes into your holiday meals, and don’t restrict yourself from enjoying your favorite holiday foods. In the long run, your mind and body will thank you.
Karina Hammer is dedicated to educating and empowering busy women to honor and nourish themselves so they can have more energy, lose weight and live a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life.
To learn more about staying healthy during the holidays or to decide if health coaching is right for you, I invite you to schedule a complimentary 30 minute consultation with me. During this session, we will discuss how I can best support you in achieving your goals. Available for in-person or phone consultations to carefully design and develop an individualized wellness program that will change your life. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment.