Holiday Meal
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Love Your Food Again

The article was written by Melissa Goldsmith, registered dietitian at Momentum Health.
The average Canadian gains between 2 and 10 lbs during the holiday season. Do you have a game plan?
Many people find healthy eating difficult during the holiday season. The holidays revolve around sharing food with friends and family, and temptations are everywhere. The good news is that you can enjoy the holidays without guilt and weight gain. A few indulgences will not sabotage your healthy eating goals. Here are some tips for a guilt-free and healthy holiday.

Eat your favorite foods

Be picky when choosing which foods to indulge in. Have your favorites, but pass on the other treats. Try indulging in your “must-have” foods 20% of the time, while eating healthy the other 80%.

Pay attention to portion sizes

Often the problem is not the food being consumed, it is the quantity. Try using a smaller plate and always make sure half of it is filled with vegetables and/or fruit.

Avoid going back for seconds

It can be tempting to go back for seconds, but try to avoid this unless you are truly still hungry. Instead, try to slow down when you are eating and enjoy each bite.

Listen to your body

Learn to listen to your body cues. When you are no longer hungry, stop eating. Ask your body whether it wants more because you are still hungry, or if it is because it tastes good. If you are still hungry choose the healthier items on the menu to go back for. Being mindful is the key to avoid overeating.
If you’re interested in learning more about the gut microbiome and its impact on digestion and overall health, check out this informative blog post.

Don’t skip meals

Skipping meals can cause overeating later. It is important to keep a consistent healthy eating routine during the holidays. Eating a healthy snack before a party will help curb the appetite and make it easier to make healthy choices.

Dress for success

During the holiday season it is helpful to wear outfits that are tailored to your body or a bit tight. It is much easier to overeat when you are wearing loose fitting clothing, such a leggings and pants with elastic bands, as they keep stretching right along with you. Wearing fitted pants can help discourage overindulging as it is a constant physical reminder.

Don’t wait until January to start your New Year’s Resolutions

Instead, make a healthy season resolution. Get a head start on your goals so you do not have more work to do in January by procrastinating.

Avoid leftovers

Send your guests home with leftovers, or freeze them for a later date. This will reduce temptations and overeating after the party.

Get moving

With more calories going into the body, it is important to burn more calories. Exercise can also help reduce holiday stress. Strive for at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity per week.

Stay hydrated

Have two glasses of water before each meal, and drink alcohol in moderation. The recommendation for alcohol in moderation is no more than 7 drinks for women and 14 for men per week.
For personalized guidance on how to make healthier choices and optimize your diet for your specific needs, consult with a healthcare professional, such as a registered dietitian.

To learn more about health practitioners in your area or to ask about providers who address specific treatment needs, contact us today.

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