How to Maintain Good Nutrition Through the Holiday Season
The holidays are a time to relax, enjoy traditional moments with family and friends and sometimes let loose at a seasonal office party. But, given all the indulging of food and drink that becomes standard practice during the holiday season, letting loose a belt notch or two might also be the end result.
How can you enjoy the holidays without blowing your nutritional budget? Take it one day – and party – at a time and don’t ditch the dietary rules you obediently follow the rest of the year.
Only Indulge in Foods You Love
Picture this: you’re dressed to the nines, standing around the catering table at a swanky holiday shindig. From your left wafts the delightful aroma of hot pigs in a blanket, and on your right, your mouth waters at the sight of some spicy Swedish meatballs on a stick.
Both foods look delicious, but you know you won’t be able to resist the meatballs. If there are foods that you could take or leave – leave them, and save your calories for indulging in your favorite dishes.
Keep Your Distance
Mingling at holiday parties includes a lot of schmoozing around the appetizer table – which sometimes includes a lot of mindless eating. How many times have you found yourself engrossed in small talk near the chip bowl, mechanically dipping nacho after nacho into the salsa as you converse?
To avoid becoming a subconscious snacker during cocktail conversations, strategically map out your party interactions. Plan to stand far away from the food table. Hold a low calorie drink in your hand to hamper your ability to grab too many appetizers. And, don’t forget to eat a healthy, light meal before you arrive at a party to prevent overindulging.
Maintain Your Regular Healthy Habits
The holidays may seem like the time to eat and drink like there’s no tomorrow – but trust us – there will be one. Instead of waking up with regrets, keep up the healthy habits you follow all year.
- Keep a proactive food diary – decide what you WILL eat rather than record what you have already eaten.
- Use smaller plates at home when serving big holiday meals, as we all have a tendency to finish what’s on our plates whether we are still hungry or not.
- Remember alcohol counts as calories! Stay away from heavy or rich dairy-based drinks and sip clear alcohol mixed with club soda to cut down on sugar.
- Keep exercising regularly.
- Don’t cancel doctor or dentist appointments that occur during the holidays – keep your health on track.
Overdoing it during the holidays is a common health hazard, so don’t beat yourself up if it happens to you. What’s most important is to recognize your misstep, acknowledge it and get back on the path to good health.
Keep your teeth healthy during the holidays and all year round. With locations in Alexandria, VA and Washington DC, Dr. Lawrence Singer provides a holistic approach to dental care that incorporates total-body health and wellness.
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