10 Tips For Staying Healthy Over The Holidays
Eating healthy over the holidays doesn’t have to be an unrealistic goal. There are almost always healthy foods mixed amongst the not so healthy options. Enjoying a glass of wine or decadent dessert is one of the best parts of the holiday season. If you are going to a variety of holiday functions and treating yourself to alcohol, chips, chocolates, cakes, and not so healthy dinners then there may be a bit of a problem. Not only will you have to loosen your belt buckle but you may also experience
poor quality sleep
and a depressed immune system
Over indulging over the holidays often leaves you a little worse for where but this doesn’t have to be the case! Listed below are Safely Sweet Nutrition’s approved tips to avoid weight gain, remain energized and healthy over the holiday season.
Always Eat Breakfast
Eating a wholesome breakfast to jumpstart your day with help to ensure you won’t over eat later. Don’t skip meals! Keep those blood sugar levels balanced so you don’t go looking for a quick energy fix from some sugary treats.
Try and follow the 80/20 rule. Aim to eat healthy and wholesome 80% of the time. The other 20% can be for your holiday indulgences. Prioritize your holiday favourites. What have you been thinking about since last year? The holiday treats that you can’t live without and have looked forward to all year long can and should be enjoyed in moderation.
Bring A Healthy Dish
Try and bring a side-dish that includes whole foods with unprocessed ingredients. If there are not a lot of healthy options, load your plate up with the dish you brought.
Eat The Rainbow
When snacking and filling your dinner plate focus on the colourful foods. Colourful foods = fruit and veggies. Not so colourful foods = bread, pasta, potatoes, and chips.
Protein/Fibre/Fat - before you go
Prior to attending a dinner party, try snacking on hummus and veggies or some raw nuts and seeds. Both of these snacks provide your body with fat, protein, and fibre. They will keep your blood sugar levels balanced and help to keep you feeling satiated prior to dinner.
Don’t Over Eat
It may be hard to stop eating when there are so many delicious foods around. Eat slowly and chew thoroughly, allow some time before allowing yourself seconds. It generally takes 15-20 minutes for your stomach to signal to your brain that you’re full.
Don’t forget to drink water. Water is extremely important for overall health and vitality. Over the holidays there is rum and eggnog, baileys and coffee, sodas, and wine. Ensure you are drinking at least 2 L’s or pure water daily. Alcohol and caffeine both have a diuretic effect, drink an extra glass of water for every caffeinated/alcohol beverage you consume.
It Is Okay To Say No
A lot of hosts love to fill their guests right up. It is okay to say no. If you know something doesn’t agree with you (dairy, gluten, tomatoes, corn) avoid piling it on your plate. If the hosts asks why you’re not eating them just say that you have a sensitivity or that your doctor has recommended for you to avoid a few of the ingredients that are present in it. Always say you wish you could, and that it looks great!
Prioritize exercise in your holiday routine. Enjoy the winter activities around your town. Ice skating, skiing, walking/hiking. There are many things that can be enjoyed with your family over the holidays.
Throughout the festive season you’re often out late and your sleep schedule gets thrown out the window. Try to ensure you are getting at least 7 hours of sleep each night. Practice proper sleep hygiene by avoiding your cellphone, computer and television at least 1 hour before bed, avoiding caffeinated beverages past the early afternoon, eating before bed, and by avoiding napping after indulging on that turkey dinner.