Holidays bring emotion, family, memories and FOOD---
the perfect recipe for a nutritional catastrophe.
Research shows that the average American gains (and compounds) an additional 5lbs every year over the holidays!
Whether it's Thanksgiving, a birthday, or any other holiday,
our tendency is to over-indulge in both eating and drinking.
Here's our easy to follow 7 Nutrition Hacks for the holidays to help you stick with your goals. Use these 7 tools to help you better deal with EVERY holiday.
1. EAT THE FOOD, JUST NOT ALL OF IT.
Eat 1 plate of food mostly filled with lean protein (turkey, fish, lean beef, tofu, etc), vegetables (AMGAP: as much green as possible) and healthier carbs (sweet potato, mashed potatoes, rice vs. bread/pastries). Garnish by adding very small servings of guilty pleasures.
2. LIMIT ALCOHOL AND SUGARY BEVERAGES.
This is a difficult one, but if you've got a goal, it's worth it. Limit your alcohol to one glass of wine, one beer, one cocktail. Sip it and savor it. It's a slippery slope with this one -- drinking sugary drinks triggers the palate to crave more sweets. If you must, choose drinks that have little or no sugar.
3. DRINK A TON OF WATER.
Not only will this keep you feeling full, but it will also dilute the sodium found in many holiday foods, and will keep you hydrated and less bloated.
4. REMEMBER WHY YOU ARE THERE.
You are there for the company, for the memories, for the good times. None of these things require overeating or drinking. Eat slow, enjoy every bite, savor every sip. Enjoy the conversation and catching up...
5. HAVE DESSERT
Have dessert.... only if you REALLY need to. BUT, make it something REALLY worth it. Have a half serving. Dessert option 2: Make your own healthy dessert and bring some to share. A large, beautiful fruit salad is never frowned upon.
6. DON'T GO TO A MEAL/PARTY HUNGRY
This is a personal pitfall of mine. Waiting too long before a meal means I will be ravenous and will eat whatever is in front of me. If eating at your regular meal times is not possible, eat or bring healthy snacks to tide you over or eat a small healthy meal before you go.
7. STOP BEFORE YOU'RE FULL.
Stop before you're full. See #4 and #6. Eat slow, chew slow, enjoy the heck out of your food. Doing this will allow your brain to catch up to your stomach and stop overeating.
Use these tips to enjoy every holiday to its fullest and still get the results you want. It may seem hard when you start but it gets easier over time. Cheers!