Worried you'll have trouble staying on track this holiday season? It can be tough to practice new, healthier habits when you're being tempted with favorite comfort foods at every turn. Navigating family events and social obligations may be tricky but with some simple planning it's possible to enjoy festive gatherings while still being mindful of your wellness goals.
Be Prepared Looking forward to those holiday parties but also know that you'll be struggling with temptation? Don't go hungry. Set yourself up for success by enjoying a satisfying meal before you head out the door. You may still choose to indulge in a treat or two but won't be as likely to overdo it. If it's pot luck, consider sharing healthier habits by bringing your favorite hummus appetizer, festive kale salad or roasted vegetable casserole.
Stick to the Sides Sweet potatoes, green beans, collards, stuffing, carrots, squash, corn, fruit, nuts... plant foods are a staple on every holiday table, and full of fiber and nutrition! On the other hand, the added fat, sugar and salt in traditional family recipes may not be exactly what the doctor ordered. Whether you're determined to stick to your plan or treat this as a special occasion and bend the rules a bit, be sure to plan ahead and build a strategy. Knowing your options will help you make the best possible choice, in the moment. Also keep in mind that even though the focus may be on the food, holiday gatherings are really about the folks sitting around the table.
Go Homemade Leave those prepackaged and processed products on the shelf. Love pumpkin pie? Skip the bakery department and make your own. The internet is filled with healthier versions of holiday favorites but even if you decide to indulge in Grandma's secret recipe, you're still building a more mindful experience by baking from scratch... plus, you'll know exactly what's in each delectable bite!
Still Hungry? Wait 15-20 minutes before going back for seconds. This gives your brain time to catch up with your stomach. You may be surprised to find that you're full, especially if you've been sticking to those fiber-full, plant-based dishes. Well... maybe just a tiny bit of room left for dessert.
Get Moving Once dinner is over - get up! Is everyone sitting around the TV and eating leftovers? Clear the table, help with the dishes, invite your favorite relative to take a walk... and hang out with the kids, they're always up and running!