Holiday Guide – How to Have a Healthy Holiday

If your season is anything like ours, your calender is filled with a string of wonderful celebrations – all punctuated with a delicious meal, reception, party, or cookie exchange – am I right?! There’s a reason why “Go on a diet” tops the charts for New Year’s Resolutions… because we all allow ourselves a month or two of utter indulgence in the name of Christmas tradition.

Now, I’m not here to ba-humbug the whole eat, drink, and be merry bit – only to offer a few suggestions for how we can keep ourselves a little more balanced in the realm of what we consume during this holiday season.

Beyond the obvious side-effect of weight gain, there are other reasons for why we should be mindful of what we’re putting into our bodies this time of year. Here are just a few:

+ ‘Tis the season for air born illness – and our best defense, is a strong and healthy immune system. How do we bolster those immune systems? Nutrition.
+ Our schedules are more full than usual this time of year, and so we need to be functioning at optimum energy levels to meet the challenge – good sleep, and lots of healthy vitamins and minerals aid in how much energy we have each day.
+ Flare-ups of food allergies/diabetes/hypoglycemia/etc. can cause you to miss out on the festive celebrations! It’s worth taking extra precautions to keep your food-related condition in good order.

So HOW is it even possible to show restraint? My personal motto is “everything in moderation”. I’ll never deny myself a piece of delicious looking cheesecake at a Christmas party…I’ll simply take a very small piece. A craving is truly satisfied by just a taste.

Drink a lot of water! Not only will it help keep your skin, nails, and hair hydrated during this very drying season, it will also help you feel full. Sure, enjoy a cup of decadent eggnog punch, but then switch to good old H20 for the refills.

Eat before you go. If you know full well that you are headed to a party filled with pigs in a blanket and cheese fondue, have a salad before you leave the house. Not only will the fiber help your body process all the processed foods, but you won’t be nearly as tempted to fill your plate to overflowing as you would have been on an empty stomach.

When you are attending a potluck, bring something healthy! A veggie plate, or hummus and pitas…guarantee that there will be something delicious and nutritious at the party by bringing it yourself!

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When you are eating in, feed yourself well. Plan some light, vegetable-laden meals for your dinners. Have healthy snacks at the ready! This time of the year, clementines are in all their glory – so keep a bowl of them out on the kitchen counter for anyone to snag when the munchies hit. Or perhaps a candy dish filled with nuts? Or bags with baby carrots in the fridge for a grab-and-go snack. Greek yogurt is also very filling, delicious, and full of protein. – They key to choosing healthy snacks is having them in view, and easily accessible.

May your days be merry, healthy, and bright!

Got more healthy livings tips to share with us? Please do so in the comments!

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