Hopefully, the novelty of those fun size Halloween treats and pumpkin spice concoctions has tapered off. Now, we fast forward to the over indulgences of Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas, Kwanza, New Years and any other holiday, birthday or excuse with which to disregard our health.
It’s no wonder New Year’s resolutions often revolve around “getting back on track,” losing weight, or just going to the doctor. Many of our favorite and traditional holiday recipes are loaded with fat, salt,and sugar. All of which have been proven to cause detrimental effects on health including chronic diseases such as, high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease.
This can be the year that you can hold up that glass of champagne (just one) on New Year’s Eve and proudly toast to yourself…
- You CAN get through the holidays without gaining weight
- You CAN get through the holidays without jeopardizing your health
- You CAN get through the holidays and be more fit
All it takes to survive the season is these few simple tips:
Drink water: Water helps you to stay hydrated, flush your system, and keep you feeling fuller.
Exercise on most days: Try to schedule in at least 30-60 minutes (not necessarily all at the same time) of exercise 4-6 days per week. This will help burn off a few of those extra calories you may have consumed and keep your metabolism charged by toning up muscles.
Try new recipes: This year try swapping out some of your traditional recipes with some healthier alternatives. Many websites, cook books, and periodicals offer lower calorie and lower fat versions of customary dishes.
Plan: You know your calendar is packed with holiday functions. Be prepared. Always have a plan in place for these unpredictable situations. Try to find out what is being served before arriving so you already have some idea of what to choose. AND, stick to your plan.
Use smaller plates: Smaller plates can hold just a few bites. Be very particular of what you place on that plate and try not to go back for seconds.
Be assertive: It’s perfectly acceptable to say “no, thank you.” If you feel that you cannot insult your host, take small servings and just try one or two bites.
Limit your alcohol consumption: Even one alcoholic beverage can impair your better judgment. Try to avoid alcohol. If you must partake, try a wine spritzer or light beer to enjoy a cocktail without wasting too many calories or impairing your ability to continue to make good and healthy decisions.