The combination of holiday stress, busy schedules, festive gatherings and cold and dreary winter days make it challenging to maintain a healthy diet this time of year. There are a number of places people “get caught” making poor diet choices over the holidays, leading to weight gain, low energy and high stress levels before the New Year has even hit. Here are 6 tips to help you make healthier choices while leaving room for a few of your favourite indulgences.
Learn the power of positive thinking. Visualizing yourself at a party or family dinner and making an advance plan of what foods and drinks you’ll have can help give you greater control over the choices you make once there. If you can picture yourself turning down that second piece of your mom’s famous pecan pie, it may be easier to follow through with this when the time comes.
Spend your calories wisely. Those delicious puff pastries and spring rolls are typically high in fat and calories, so have only one or two of your favourite hors d’oeuvres, then grab a glass of sparkling water or chew a stick of gum to prevent eating more. With all of the calories you’ve saved, you can enjoy a guilt-free dinner and maybe even have room for a small portion of a tasty treat for dessert.
Add probiotics to support. To ward off any tummy troubles from any over indulgences, try Jamieson’s Probiotic Sticks, which can ease gastrointestinal upset and help with digestion by delivering “good” bacteria to your digestive tract. These fun and convenient sticks contain a delicious natural plum-flavoured powder that dissolves directly on the tongue, delivering 1 billion active probiotic cells. And since they don’t require refrigeration, they’re perfect for tossing in a bag or coat pocket on your way to your next holiday gathering.
Keep a food journal. Recording everything (yes, everything) you eat can give you a more honest look at where all of your calories are really coming from and may prevent you from overeating in the first place. Need more motivation? Grab a buddy and make a plan to stick to this year round.
Get your body moving. Incorporate 20 to 30 minutes of physical activity into your daily routine to help burn off those extra calories, manage stress and keep your energy levels up throughout the holiday season. Go for a walk around the block with a family member after dinner, get outdoors to build a snowman, spend the weekend skiing with friends or join everyone on the dance floor at your next holiday party.
Limit your alcohol intake. Alcoholic beverages are loaded with calories and can cause you to become dehydrated. To save your waistline, have a glass of plain or sparkling water with a splash of lemon or lime in between each alcoholic drink, or try non-alcoholic versions of your favourite festive cocktail.