The holiday season is here! Time for good cheer and good will toward all—not to mention good food.
But, too often the holidays are marred by stress: getting your shopping done, hosting family, cooking for a small army and the weight gain that comes with it.
Make this year different and maintain your healthy eating habits for a healthy holiday season all yearlong with these simple tips:
1. Watch What You Eat and How You Eat It
Whether it’s an ice cream on a hot day or a slice of pavalova, the first bite is always the best. Don’t waste calories on a huge portion! If you choose to indulge, savor the flavor but don’t give yourself license to gorge!
The bread basket, the bowl of chips, that tray of homemade fudge… Leaving large servings of foods within reach encourages mindless eating. Dr. Brian Wansink of Cornell University found that moviegoers ate more popcorn when provided with a larger portion size rather than stopping when full. If you’re having a snack, pick a portion and stick to it.
Whether at home, at a restaurant or at a party, good table manners can protect your waistline! Cut only one bite at a time. Put your fork (or spoon) down between every bite. You’ll be able to better engage in conversation and give your body time to figure out when it’s full.
2. Watch What You Drink
Liquid calories like soft drink, sweetened iced teas, lattes and blended coffeehouse beverages are often devious—they don’t fill you up so you feel like they ‘don’t count’. In fact, according to researchers at Johns Hopkins, reducing your liquid calorie intake has more impact on weight loss than reducing your solid calorie intake!
Staying hydrated is imperative. Drinking plenty of water helps to curb false hunger pangs, flush your body of toxins and keep your skin feeling fabulous. You don’t have to give up your coffee and tea; just be sure you’re not loading it up with lots of sugar.
3. Get Moving
The holidays are supposed to be a happy time. If you’re finding them stressful, take some time to exercise and release some much-needed endorphins (and burn some calories)! Staff at the Mayo Clinic say, “Virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to yoga, can act as a stress reliever.” Don’t think of exercise as an obligation, think of it as a gift!