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5 Ways to Eat Healthy During the Holiday Season

refrigerator

The holidays are a time when friends and family look forward to spending quality time together, often at parties. Food and drinks are a huge part of celebrations. It is not uncommon for people to eat too much and put on too many extra pounds.

What can you do during these times to minimize the side effects of enjoying holiday meals?

Drink a Lot of Water

Woman Drinking Water

Drinking water during any season is good for you. It is important to remain hydrated to keep your energy levels up, maximize your brain function, and keep your bodily systems functioning properly. When you are at a party or a family celebration meal, take a few sips of water in between bites as it will slow down your eating. In addition to the high caloric foods we often eat during the holiday season, many people also consume a lot of calories by drinking soda, other sugary drinks, and cocktails. Try drinking water between cocktails and courses. If you drink too many alcoholic beverages, you will lower your awareness of how much you are eating.

If You Don’t Currently Exercise – Start

If you currently have a regular exercise schedule, holiday time is not the time to stop. Make sure to set some time aside from your holiday parties and family celebrations to squeeze in your exercise. If you aren’t currently exercising, you should think about starting to add some fitness activities into your daily routine. If you are not the type of person who likes to go to a gym or don’t want to invest in any exercise machines, there are plenty of things you can do to add some physical activity to your life.

Try taking the stairs when you can. Have some fun as a family with activities like ice skating or hiking. Another idea is to look online for one of the many available workout videos and exercise along with them. Also keep in mind that as long as you keep your body moving, there are many ways outside of traditional workouts that will help you burn calories. Examples are cleaning out your closets and decorating your home for the holidays.

Be Selective

desserts

If you are on a diet and tell yourself you can never eat anything sweet like desserts, the only thing you will be thinking about is what you can’t have. It’s better to allow yourself to eat something you really like in moderation, whether on a diet or during the holidays than to make it the “forbidden fruit”. A good rule of thumb is if you don’t love it, leave it. In other words, rather than filling your plate with a lot of high-caloric foods that aren’t your favorites, select only the foods and desserts you really love. Don’t forget that many hosts put lots of goodies out before a meal that guests tend to eat without even thinking about it. Goodies such as:

  • Mixed nuts
  • Gianduja chocolate
  • Chips and dip
  • Pretzels
  • Cheese and crackers
  • Hors-d’oeuvres

Eat Breakfast

Eating breakfast is important for those who are trying to lose weight and is just as important to avoid overeating during the holidays. Research has shown that eating a healthy breakfast regularly will help you lose weight by:

  • Replenishing and refueling your body with what it needs to supply your muscles with immediate energy
  • Reducing hunger later in the day where you might be tempted to eat food that is easy to grab like junk food
  • Helping you make more nutritious food choices for the rest of the day because you will not be having cravings for junk food

Save Your Calories for the Party

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If you do not keep high-caloric foods and sugary desserts in your house, you can’t eat them unless you go out, right? If you open your refrigerator or pantry and see goodies like cookies, chips, and soda, it is more difficult to not allow yourself to indulge. Keeping only healthy foods in your home will help you not overindulge until you get to a party or family gathering where you can eat, drink, and have a great time.

Enjoying your time with friends and family during the holidays is a wonderful experience. Overeating and drinking too much alcohol oftentimes go hand-in-hand. There is no need to deprive yourself, but there are things you can do to minimize the after-effects of too much partying and too much fun.

Article Submitted By Community Writer

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