Healthy Holidays: Eating Over the Holidays

It can be difficult to stick to your “gentle shifts” over the holiday season with all the temptation of chocolate, cookies, cakes, and parties! We have some suggestions to help keep you healthy this holiday season. Little changes can mean big results. Something as simple as sticking to drinking water instead of pop this season will help cut down your sugar intake. 1 can of pop has approximately 10 teaspoons of sugar. Get outside for walks, enjoy time with friends and family, and keep a few of these suggestions in mind to keep from overindulging this season!!

  • Work up an appetite: The holidays are a time to gather with friends and family, to enjoy good company, to tell stories and to share delicious meals. Why not spend some of that time being active?! Put on mitts, toques, and gloves and play in the snow! Or, leave the dishes for an hour while you take a nice walk in your neighbourhood with your guests. Step outside and enjoy the day, take a breath, and celebrate time together!
  • Order water when eating out at meals, and ask for a slice of lemon to add to it. Lemon will help stimulate the digestive system, getting you ready for that big meal!
  • Skip the appetizers at restaurants and stick to the main meal
  • Order extra vegetables on the side of your meal instead of French fries, white rice, or pasta. Better yet, order a salad with fish or chicken and ask for the dressing on the side so you can control how much you pour on
  • Bring a fruit or veggie tray with you to social gatherings, or cut up a variety of different fruits and vegetables and make your own arrangement! Fruits and vegetables are great to munch on, and these trays ensure that you will have something healthy to eat at parties. Leave the dip at home and instead make or buy a hummus. Make our yogurt fruit dip or our chocolate mousse for the fruit.
  • Offer to make snacks and treats for parties so you know there will be something to eat that is healthier than store-bought varieties. Try some of these delicious recipes!  Chocolate Fudge, Sun Energy Balls, and Pumpkin Pie Muffins
  • I drink sparkling water with a touch (teaspoon) of lemon juice instead of pop at parties. If you want a delicious drink, add 1 tablespoon of your favourite juice (try pure orange or unsweetened cranberry) to sparkling water
  • Stay active by checking out one of the many festivities around the city. Check out Heritage Park, Zoo Lights, Farmer’s Markets, and Artisan Markets around town.
  • Park at the back of the parking lot, bundle up, and walk to do your shopping. Take the stairs to burn off that huge company lunch. And get outside and play in the snow with the kids!
  • Commit to the gym! Gym attendance diminishes during the season because we are all so busy. Make a commitment to attend classes, or to just walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes a day

How do you stay healthy over the holidays? We’d love to hear from you!

Carrie Dancey, RHN

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