During the holidays, one of the many challenges is healthy holiday eating. Balancing your health between family and holiday obligations, not to mention stress eating, can be challenging. Eating only a few extra calories a day can end up equaling a few pounds of weight gain over the five-to-six-week holiday period. And while this does not sound like much, few people ever shed that weight in the following months, despite the traditional New Year’s resolutions.
How to Practice Healthy Holiday Eating
However, you don’t need to deprive yourself fully. Instead, practice defensive, healthy holiday eating and cooking. If you are aware of what you need to do to keep the wight off going into the holiday season, you may come out feeling even better than before. Here are some tips to do just that.
- Be Picky. Do not eat everything at a family meal or holiday party. Be choosy. If there is a high calorie food like a piece of pie that you are craving, eat that and limit yourself on something else.
- Don’t Go Out on an Empty Stomach. Before going to a party, eat something healthy. This way, you won’t be snacking on everything you see because you are hungry.
- Cook for (and from) the Heart. If you are doing the cooking, be mindful of what you make. Use less butter, cream, lard, and other ingredients that are heavy in saturated fats.
- Get Moving. The holidays are a prime time to sit on the couch. But to motivate yourself up and moving. This will keep your metabolism moving and calories burning. Go for a walk, play a game of football, or turn up the holiday tunes.
- Get Your Sleep. You more than likely will be staying out past your bedtime. The loss of sleep can mess with your blood sugar and prompt you to eat more high fat and high sugar food. Do your best to aim for 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night.
Self-Care for the Holidays
The most wonderful time of the year can often be the most stressful. We feel the pressure to make every holiday recital, party, and family get together. And in all the hustle and bustle, we often forget to take care of ourselves. This can lead to the holiday blues. It is important to be mindful of our well-being from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. Here are a few tips on how to do that.
- Create Healthy Boundaries. It is easy to want to say yes to every invitation. However, it is important to establish boundaries for yourself so that others will respect them as well. Know your limit and when to say no.
- Establish an Emotional Intelligence. The holidays can be very emotional time for many individuals. Often, we tend to push these emotions to the side to power through three months of fast-paced festivities. Take the time to process your emotions during the holidays to balance your emotional wellness.
- Establish Your Own Truth. Remember what is important to you. The holidays are often commercialized heavily to make you think you need to share in the media’s values and ideals of what the holidays are supposed to be. Take time to figure out what the holidays mean to you and hold to those truths.
- Give Yourself “Me” Time. It is easy to get lost in the flurry of the holidays. But to survive, take time for yourself. Intentionally carve out time for yourself. This can be done doing something like a pedicure or massage, or in the peace of your own home.
Giving Thanks Can Lead to a Healthier Mindset
Gratitude is a way for us to appreciate what we are blessed with, instead of always reaching for what we don’t It can help us refocus and improve our mental well-being.
Gratitude can result in people not only appreciating but also taking that appreciation and giving the joy they feel back to the world. In the world of research, gratitude is generally associated with happiness. It is connected to a positive outlook on life, good health, and contentment.
A study was done where participants were asked to write a few sentences each week on particular topics. One group wrote about things they were grateful for throughout the week, another group wrote about things that annoyed them, and a third group wrote about things that affected them with no emphasis on positive or negative. The groups continued this over the course of 10 weeks and results showed that those who wrote about things they were grateful for had a much greater outlook on life. Furthermore, they had a greater resolve to exercise and had fewer visits to the physician.
Here are some ways we can practice gratitude:
- Meditate. Meditation involved focusing on the present moment without judgment of your surroundings.
- Count Your Blessings: Choose a time of day to sit down and reflect on your blessings. This can be looking at what went right, and what you appreciate in your life.
- Thank Someone: Expressing your gratitude is a healthy exercise by which you can learn to express your appreciation.
- Write a thank-you note: You can make both yourself and someone else happy by writing a simple thank-you note.
The Chiropractic Factor: How Chiropractic Care Can Help You Manage Healthy Holiday Eating
Healthy holiday eating and losing weight are some of the greatest personal challenges that a person may face. This is due in part because there are so many various factors that may go into the process- ranging from current weight to genetics.
The possible weight loss routes to take may seem endless, and almost impossible to choose from. However, seeking out chiropractic care may aid in your weight loss goals. Chiropractic adjustments may relieve spinal pressure that could be causing dysfunctions of your nervous system.
By relieving the nerve irritation, you may find that exercise is easier, therefore your ability to burn more calories increases, which will aid in greater weight loss. Many studies have surmised that the nervous system plays a role in weight loss. By finding areas of stress in the spine, the Family Wellness Chiropractor can adjust and restore motion and alignment, thereby returning the body to optimal function.
To learn more about the benefits of chiropractic care and the benefits of making it part of your family’s wellness lifestyle. Click to schedule a complimentary consultation with Body & Balance practitioners today.
RESOURCES: DR. CLAUDIA ANRIG-THE WELLNESS FAMILY