Holiday Tips for Wellness

Holiday eating

During the holidays we tend to be off schedule, eating things that we normally wouldn’t and experiencing stressors (both positive and not so positive), so how can we stay on track with our wellbeing? Here are a few pointers:

  1. Don’t overschedule!  Visiting the entire family in a day might be a bit too much.  Create little breaks for yourself so that you can take a moment to breathe.  If your calendar is starting to fill up, block off an hour or two to exercise, rest, meditate or get into nature.  The boost to your mental state can have a positive impact on your interactions!
  2. Prepare for parties.  With an uptick in social commitments, we need to be mindful of what and how we are eating and drinking.  You may want to “pre-eat” before a gathering so that you don’t arrive hungry which increases the chances of overeating and eating high calorie dishes.  “Pre-eating” means having a reasonable portion of nutrient rich foods prior to arriving at a celebration.  As for drinking, a nice trick that I have used is to have a seltzer water with a lime or lemon rather than an alcoholic beverage.  It looks and tastes like a treat, but causes no harmful side effects.  Limiting liquid calories can go a long way to help maintain a healthy weight.
  3. Gather for an activity. As your friends and family want to get together, dinner plans are very common.  Suggest to others that you go for a walk, play lawn bowling, go on a treasure hunt or have a friendly football game together, either replacing a calorie-dense meal or complimenting it with some added activity.
  4. Find support.  When your host or hostess insists that you finish the pan of potatoes, find an ally in making your goals a reality.  Maybe Cousin Ann can come to your aid with distraction or kind confrontation.  Recruit a friend or family member to support you with your better choices for your health.
  5. When you goof up, start over!  Often we slip with our diets and throw in the towel.  Remember that making a bad choice does not necessitate more bad health choices.  Start over, course, correct, get back on track.

For all of us the holidays have specific meaning.  Regardless of your celebration, remember to be good to yourself and to protect your hard-won gains towards your goals.

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