How to Eat Healthy This Holiday Season

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Has overindulgence ruined your Thanksgiving? If you are trying to eat healthy over the holidays, do not lose hope. In this article, we will give tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season. At holiday celebrations without overeating, there are several ways you can still enjoy food.

See also, HOLIDAY SEASON AND YOUR MENTAL HEALTH

Getting swept up in the holiday season is simple. This mix of national and religious celebrations can help keep the cold winter away, but it can tax the arteries and strain the waistline with the parties and feasts that mark it.

You could put on two to three pounds during this 5 – 6 weeks period by eating only 200 extra calories a day-a slice of pecan pie and a tumbler of eggnog here a couple of latkes and some butter cookies there. That does not sound like much, except that in the following months and years, few individuals shed that extra weight.

You do not need to starve yourself, eat just bland things, or take a side order of guilt for your treats. Instead, you can get through the holidays without making “go on a diet” one of your New Year’s resolutions by doing a bit of defensive eating and cooking.

“Many people assume that gaining weight over the holidays is inevitable,” said Shoshana Bennett, Ph.D., a California-based clinical psychologist. She said that with a little mindfulness and preparation, gaining weight during the holidays does not have to be the case. Here are a few tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season and throughout the year.

eat healthy

1. Eat before you go

“Never go hungry to a party hungry,” Bennett told Healthline. One of the tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season is to eat a small meal that contains protein before leaving home. “Protein helps to balance blood sugar, so you will find yourself heading to the dessert table first without it in your system,” she said.

2. Think about what you eat

Try to remain conscious while you’re at the smorgasbord mulling through all the foods that appeal to you. Bennett observed, “If you decide to eat something, do it slowly and deliberately, to taste and chew every bite”. “A sign of ‘unconscious’ eating is when you hardly remember eating the item.” You will not be able to savour the delicious tastes of food if you eat mindlessly, and you will be left with only the extra calories that remain.

3. Reframe your failures

Stephanie McKercher, a food blogger and registered dietitian at Grateful Grazer, said: “If you overindulge, forget about it and move on.” McKercheralso said, “One of the biggest ways we get stuck in a rut over the holidays is by beating ourselves up after one or two less-than-healthy indulgences”.The holiday experience involves frosted cookies and creamy dips, so if we have too many, we shouldn’t go too hard on ourselves.

“Try to reframe your thoughts to consider what you have learned and how you can set yourself up for healthier choices in the future, instead of calling yourself a failure,” she said. “It is never the answer to feel guilty over food”.

4. Distance helps the heart stay healthy

One of the tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season is to avoid standing next to the food table at a party. That makes it harder to reach for food mindlessly as you speak. Pop a mint or a stick of gum if you know you are susceptible to recreational eating, so you won’t keep searching for the chips.

5. Skip weight loss and focus on maintaining your weight

Many individuals choose to prevent overeating, while others use this time of year to lose weight. You could be better off striving to control your weight instead of trying to lose pounds in the midst of all the temptation.

6. Pay attention to what really matters

Though food is an integral part of the holidays, we should focus more on our friends and family, laughing and cheering. It is okay to overeat or indulge once in a while if balance and moderation are your normal guides.

7. Stay hydrated

To avoid overeating, Bennett said that staying hydrated is important because people sometimes mistake hunger for thirst. One of the tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season is to stay hydrated. “With that small meal, drink a full glass of water, and you will set yourself up for success,” she said.

8. Take 10 before taking seconds

Your stomach’s “I’m getting full” signal takes a few minutes to get to your brain. Take a 10-minute break after your first meal is over. Make conversation. Drink a little water. Re-check your appetite, then will realize whether you are full or not.

9. Taste it up – in small doses

The more we swallow, the more we may feel full and satisfied, but it’s the taste that’s pleasing. With that in mind, don’t hurry to eat the food that you choose. Shoshana Bennett, Ph.D., a California-based Clinical Psychologist, said: “Instead of gulping and missing most of the pleasure, take your time to eat a little of each selected food and savour it”. “A smaller amount can be much more satisfying than a large one, and without the stomachache, it leaves room for more goodies to be tasted.”

10. Avoid alcohol on empty stomach

Alcohol increases your appetite and reduces your capacity to control what you consume.

11. Budget wisely

Be patient and spend/burn calories wisely on the things you enjoy.

12. Pup on your dancing (or walking) shoes

A perfect way to work off those holiday calories is to dance. Suggest a stroll before the feast or even between dinner and dessert if you are at a family party.

Here are also, SAFETY TIPS FOR CHRISTMAS PARTY

13. Cook from (and for) the heart

Be creative with recipes that use less cream, butter, vegetable shortening, lard, and other ingredients high in saturated fats to convey to family and friends that you really care about them. Use turkey or fish cooked instead of red meat.

14. Make room for veggies

One of the tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season is to make room for veggies. We shouldn’t forget vegetables and fruits at meals and parties. Unless they are slathered with butter or creamy sauces, they make great snacks and even better main or side dishes.

15. Be buffet savvy

One of the tips on how to eat healthy this holiday season is to be savvy at the buffet. At a buffet, before putting something on your plate, you should walk around the food table. You may be less likely to pile on things one after another by trying out all of your choices.

Source (s)

7 ways to eat healthy this holiday season – healthline

12 tips for holiday eating – harvard

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