Tips for Healthier Holidays
‘Tis the season for festivities, feasting, and indulging in an abundance of delicious food. Holiday parties and the joyful atmosphere often lead to an excess of eating. Navigating these gatherings can be a challenge, as the temptation to indulge in decadent treats is strong. However, there are some suggestions to help you make healthier eating choices while cooking and celebrating during this holiday season.
Eat something before you go.
Have some vegetables, a salad or a light protein snack before you go out to curb your appetite and be less likely to be tempted to overeat when you get to the party.
Substitutions can cut down on calories and fat in your favorite holiday recipes. Try using chicken broth and skim milk instead of butter, egg whites instead of the whole egg or replace mayonnaise with non-fat yogurt.
Don’t panic about the number on the scale.
If you weigh yourself after Thanksgiving and discover that you are two pounds heavier, don’t panic. It’s not fat. When the body breaks down carbohydrates, like those found in potatoes, breads and stuffing, it converts them into carbon dioxide and water. The extra weight is mostly water and should be gone within days.
Make wise choices.
During the holiday season, it’s still possible to enjoy desserts while being mindful of moderation and calorie intake. For instance, considering the calorie content, having one slice of pecan pie is equivalent to consuming two pieces of apple pie. Opting for a refreshing sparkling water with a twist can be a healthier alternative to calorie-laden cocktails. By keeping these tips in mind, you can savor the holiday treats while being conscious of your calorie consumption.
Put on your walking shoes and head for the mall. Or get outside to walk and take the dog, do yard work or play with the kids. Exercise will also help to reduce the stresses of the holiday season, so you’ll feel better.
Try healthy gift giving.
Some healthier alternatives to sweets as your stocking stuffers are an assortment of herbal teas, a vegetarian cookbook, lotions and bath items, vitamin E lip balm, or a gift certificate to a spa or yoga class.
Enjoy the company.
The holiday season provides a wonderful opportunity to cherish moments with our loved ones. By placing our focus on the time spent together, we can create enduring memories that will be cherished for a lifetime.