Here are 12 Simple healthy eating holiday tips to avoid the dreaded holiday weight gain. Start the new year on a healthy note!
The holiday season is a time of happiness, marked by the presence of loved ones, laughter, and a festive spirit. But tempting treats like eggnog, holiday cookies, and Grandma’s irresistible pecan pie can make it challenging to maintain your desired health (and waistline).
Fortunately, you can partake in the holiday festivities without compromising your health objectives. Continue reading to discover how to do just that!
When it’s that time of year, delicious holiday favorites can be found everywhere you look. These healthy eating tips for the holiday season can help you have fun with family and friends without tipping the scales too.
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Think about creating a healthier twist on holiday dishes. Opt for baking your turkey instead of deep frying. Use orange juice as a natural sweetener in cranberry sauce instead of sugar.
Remember: not all fruits and veggies are created equal. One way you can cut back on the carbs is to try mashing cauliflower as an alternative to potatoes.
3. Mindful Eating
Remember, it might take your brain as much as 20 minutes to register that you’ve had enough to eat. Therefore, take your time during holiday meals, eat slowly, and fully enjoy every mouthful at the dinner table!
4. Don’t skip meals
Skipping meals to save calories for later usually backfires. You may end up ravenous and more likely to overeat. Stick to a meal schedule to keep your blood sugar steady and prevent overeating.
5. Fill up on those vegetables
There’s nothing wrong with indulging in your favorite foods. Just watch your portion sizes and don’t overdo it. Try using a smaller plate. Start with a small portion, and go back for seconds if you need more.
6. Watch your portions
Vegetables are packed with nutrients, low in calories, and high in fiber, aiding in prolonged satiety. During holiday get-togethers, try to fill half of your plate with vegetables and prioritize eating them first.
7. Drink smart
Alcoholic drinks are high in empty calories, which add up. Alternate your drinks with a glass of water, or dilute your wine with sparkling water. Alternatively, you can opt for a celebratory holiday mocktail or a cozy cup of warm tea.
Balance out additional calorie intake by targeting at least 30 minutes of physical activity on most days. Encourage family involvement with post-dinner walks, backyard touch football matches, or an entertaining dance party.
9. Watch where you stand
Being near the food table can lead to unconscious snacking as you socialize. To avoid this, fill up your plate and then find a spot across the room to mingle.
10. Resisting Food Pressure
Facing pressure to consume unhealthy items? When a friend or family member persists even after you’ve said no, respond with confidence and a polite refusal. Maintain your stance and repeat ‘No, thank you’ until they respect your choice.
11. Upgrade your sweets
As the holiday season approaches, temptations abound. However, it’s possible to indulge in festive delights while staying true to your health objectives. Opt for healthier alternatives, sweetened naturally with ingredients like honey, maple syrup, dates, coconut sugar, or monk fruit.
12. Don’t shop hungry
Planning a trip to the mall for holiday shopping? Make sure to eat something beforehand. This strategy helps prevent sudden hunger pangs and reduces the allure of tempting treats like Cinnabon. Carrying snacks with you is wise, too. Healthy choices include jerky, nuts, and protein bars.
There you have it – 12 easy tips for health holiday eating. This is one of the most difficult times to stay on track with our health. Do your best to enjoy yourself without falling off the rails completely. Have a great holiday season ahead! For more of FLCCC’s health tips for the holidays and beyond, stick with our tools and guides and our always informative blog.