Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Healthy Christmas Eating: TOP TEN LIST

"Christmas can be a HARD time to eat healthy!" How many times have I heard that before...even from my own mouth...

I must say, I always look forward to the coming holidays....

Christmas trees...Christmas lights...decor...parties...friends...family...celebrating the birth of Christ.....

& let's not forget about all the goodies that make their 'grand entrance'!!

...sometimes I think they dance in front of me when I go to parties :)

"Eat MEEEE!", they cry out....

But seriously...Christmas is a time that can be difficult to stick to our guns & continue to follow our healthy weight principles....

It's easy to have one, two, three + extra treats while making your rounds at a social holiday function. It's easy to get out the 'fat' pants, put on a big Christmas sweater and call it a day.

As a woman who has struggled with weight almost all of my life, and now a newly registered holistic nutritionist as of last month, I find that you have to prepare AHEAD of time before you hit the ground running during the holidays...

Out of all the books I've read on the topic, and what I've found helpful for myself, I've created a top 10 list of tips for the Christmas season...Enjoy!!!

  1. You've probably heard this one before but it bears repeating...drink LOTS of water! Best time to drink it is 1/2 hour before a meal, or 2 hours after. That way it won't distort any of your digestion juices.
  2. Fill up BEFORE you head to a party/event. This will help to prevent over-eating on the treat section! Best choices would be foods that make for a stable blood sugar level upon arrival: so focus on whole foods that contain fiber, & combine with a protein. Examples--> apple + peanut butter, banana + pumpkin seeds, trail mix, hummus & some raw veggies
  3. If you're gonna cheat, the experts recommend doing it all within a ONE hour span. That way insulin levels are kept to a minimum. Less damage that way, and back to the grind once you're home!
  4. Offer to bring a snack to put towards the event. Then you can plan to bring your fav healthy (& yummy) treat! Even if it can't compete with the choco-mousse cake, at least you have one item you know is familiar & a better choice.
  5. Ramp up your physical activity. Many times we blow it once or twice, then feel so bloated & out of shape that we sabotage the whole thing! By taking an extra long walk, doing a video, riding your bike or walking on the treadmill...you will help to curb the extra weight from packing on...AND hopefully avoid becoming discouraged!
  6. Eat a healthy balanced breakfast. I know it's been said over & over, but the most important meal of the day truly is breakfast. You'll have rev up your metabolism and help avoid binging later.
  7. Eat smaller portions. If you are going to dine on ALL the desserts at the table, then offer to split them with a friend or spouse.
  8. Let yourself have a guilt-free cheat day! This one only works if you eat consistently healthy the rest of the week. One of my friends does this regularly and has had marvellous results.
  9. Focus on the people that you want to connect with at the event. So often, I've found that just by moving myself away from the food spread I'm instantly able to focus on why I'm REALLY there.
  10. Write down your health goals! I do that regularly and I've found it very helpful. I pray about them, share them with like-minded friends, and look for small changes I need to make. I only focus on one or two changes at one time. Remember it's not a sprint, but a race!

~Cheers to the Christmas season~

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