12 Tips To Eat Healthy During The Holidays
It’s that time of year again. Holiday season, the time to wrap up the year that was, and celebrate with friends, family and work functions. Festivities are notoriously associated with holiday treats and weight gain, but it doesn’t have to be this way. It also doesn’t mean you have to skip out on all the delicious pumpkin pie or Christmas pudding.
Here are some tips and tricks to get us through the silly season, without compromising our healthy eating habits!
The holiday season isn’t an excuse to stop moving! As we mentioned in our blog, How To Stay Active Every Day!, regular physical activity is an important part of making healthy choices. Even 30 minutes everyday will benefit you more than an intense HIIT workout once a fortnight. Being mindful of your calorie intake can also help you determine how much exercise you’ll need to balance it out.
11. Never go to a social event hungry!
Eating a healthy snack like some vegetable sticks or a small handful of nuts, an hour or so beforehand works wonders. You’ll get around 10g of protein and around 3-5g fibre, with some good nutrients and fats to keep you feeling full. Less temptation to dive right in.
10. Eating out
If you already know you’re heading out for dinner, be sure to Google the menu (Zomato is so handy!) and plan what you’re going to eat before you even get there. This will ensure you are thinking about your macros and keeping your calories somewhat in check.
9. Stay hydrated
Drinking water throughout the day AND then upon arriving at the event, choose sparkling water or still water as your first drink. So when you grab the wine or glass of bubbles, you will sip it slower.
8. Ensure you have a satisfying lunch
(or whatever meal that is before) Filled with a good amount of protein and healthy fats, and load up on your favourite low carb veggies - check our Definitive List of The 50 Lowest Carb Veggies! Stick to your healthy diet by fuelling your body with the necessary nutrients, so you won’t end up eating more than you need to at the holiday party.
7. Pick your favourite spirit with a low carb mixer
For the adults, the holiday season can be the time to wind down with some alcohol. Sometimes you might even need it to get through the night...The best low carb mixer is soda, which is great because it’ll go with all kinds of spirits like vodka, whiskey and gin (tonic is probably better with the gin but it is not that low carb). Whether you’re a beer, wine or cocktail lover, find out which are the Best Low Carb Alcoholic Drinks for your next social event!
6. Sip sparkling water in between drinks and nibbles.
If you have chosen not to drink, and it’s a cocktail event, it’s more comfortable when you have a glass in your hand (and actually harder to eat gracefully as well!) Sparkling water gives you that little “special” feeling with zero calories or carbs. Try and stay away from sugary drinks too!
5. Whatever you are eating – eat slowly
Consciously chew your food, appreciate the taste and keep a mental track of how much you are eating – being mindful of this is the key to not blowing out your hard efforts at one event. Also, eating slowly keeps you looking graceful and poise at any event.
4. Hold your drink in your dominant hand
Now, this may seem odd but you are less likely to grab the foods going by on trays if you are at a cocktail party. Who would’ve thought a slight change of hand would make such a difference?!
3. Focus on the company
Whether it’s a work event or social, focus on the people that are there. Who do you admire, can learn from, enjoy talking to or just having fun with? The food should be just a very small part of the overall experience. What do you want to gain from attending the event?
2. Serving yourself at a buffet style event is a dangerous territory
First go have a look at what is on offer, before lining up if you can. This avoids you feeling pressured to choose quickly, when others are following you in the line. Fill your plate with the amount of food you would usually eat at home, and we know it’s easy to get carried away. Stick to the lean protein options (meat skewers), low carb vegetables and salads, and some cheese and/or olives, and don’t, I repeat DON’T go back for seconds or thirds.
1. Lastly and most importantly!
Remember how great it feels to wake up tomorrow knowing that you treated yourself really well and are on track to achieve your goals. Pat yourself on the back for saying NO to overeating! Your next workout will not be a struggle to get back to square one or ‘working off’ extra calories from the event, rather another step towards your goals.
Staying healthy during the holidays may, at times, seem like an impossible task with all the delicious food at your fingertips, but fear not. Following mindful eating this holiday season still lets you enjoy your favourite holiday foods! The holiday season should be a part of a healthy lifestyle, as long as you maintain physical activity and substitute things here and there for lower carb options. Enjoy your healthy holiday!