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Many of us trying to make healthier lifestyle choices dread this time of year because it’s different. We shop more, sleep less, eat more, exercise less, and stress, stress, stress!
Rather than dread . . . look ahead! Try some of these tips to help you enjoy this holiday season:
- Forgive yourself and move on! If you overindulge in food and/or alcohol, let it go, but pledge to make better choices tomorrow.
- Plan ahead and prepare for the craziness! Make a list of meals for each week, and have those ingredients available.
- Make double meals for several nights and eat twice or freeze one.
- While I don’t normally advocate snacking, tough times call for tough measures! Make sure you have healthy snacks available so you don’t get hungry (see #5). Wash and cut veggies and bag them. Have some single-serve hummus in the fridge, or make your own. Add nut butter to an apple or banana. Have nuts portioned into plastic bags ready to grab and munch on.
- Don’t allow yourself to get hungry. Eat when you should and eat when you need to (see #4). Drink lots of water!
- Eat really good food at meals. If you have a lot of restaurant meals coming up, choose food that is as close to its natural state as possible. Order your entrees without sauces. Eat lots of salads and vegetables. Pass on the breadbasket and dessert cart.
- If you want to indulge, make it a healthful indulgence. Eat a small slice of pie, or 2 cookies versus a dozen. Make fruit-based desserts. Eat ice cream! Really enjoy your indulgence and eat it slowly.
- Move! Plan for your gym sessions or add a quick walk around the neighborhood each morning or evening. One year, I vowed to walk as many miles as our Holy Family traveled from Nazareth to Bethlehem – a little over 100 miles – from Thanksgiving until the New Year.
- Meditate, pray, think thoughts of gratitude, or simply be quiet before bedtime. A little introspection can help you face a new day full of vim and vigor!
- Allow yourself some down time. There is nothing better than giving yourself the gift of doing something fun, especially when you are taking care of everyone else!
If you want to make healthier decisions, don’t wait until January 1. Give us a call now! We can help.
To Your Vitality!
Article by Dr. Robyn Holder, Guest Blogger for the BodyMind Institute