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Healthy Holiday Eating

The average adult gains 1-5 points between Thanksgiving and New Years. While much of that is lost during the first two months of the follow year, we encourage your to maintain your current weight, not gain weight, during the holiday season.

The holidays are a busy time and it is easy to put your own health priorities on the back burner. Here are some ways to stay focused on maintaining your weight during the holidays.

Healthy food tips for the holidays:

  • Enjoy smaller meals earlier in the day or before that holiday party – especially if you know they won’t have healthy foods there!

  • Bring your own favorite and healthier food dish!

  • Don’t arrive hungry. Have a healthy snack before you go.

  • Look over the foods and see first what they have. Then plan a plate based on the best choices. Allow yourself 1 treat but not 2, 3 or 4 or….more!

  • Create distance between you and the buffet table or snack tables.

  • Hang out where the healthier foods are.

  • Keep yourself active in conversation and catching up with friends and family. After all, that is why you are there right?

  • Plate up small. Choose smaller sized dinner plates; research shows people enjoy as much - but eat less! (And they may thank you for not feeling so uncomfortably stuffed!)

  • Pre-plate desserts in smaller portions. Our excitement lead to our eyes being larger than our stomachs - when we hold the serving spoon.

  • Don’t offer the super high calorie foods like eggnog. Calories add up quicker with drinking more than with eating.

  • Skip the add-ons like whipped cream and extra high calories end table snacks such as chocolates.

  • Don’t forget to drink water!

Physical Activity

  • Make your health priority number one: You can’t help others if you are unwell
  • Start your day off with some activity. Your stress levels will be lower, you will be in a better mood, and you can check off one box on your list first thing
  • If you have to choose, do your resistance training over your cardio. You’ll have more impact over time with longer calorie burn and feelings of self- efficacy
  • Include presents that keep the kids moving. Then try them out and make it a tradition.
  • Assign a teen be the leader to organize an after dinner walk! Include a game like “I Spy Something….” for the young ones.
  • If there is snow, make a snow man and snow woman. Add creative accessories such as a scarf, nose and eyes!
  • If the weather is mild, walk to a park or throw a football or play Frisbee.
  • Limit T.V. and screen time and sitting. Replace with being outdoors or playing indoors.
  • Walk the family dog or do a service and walk a neighbor’s dog!

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