As the holiday season approaches you might find yourself stressing over what foods to eat (and what foods to avoid). How about trying to do things differently this holiday season? Instead, ask how you can enjoy the holidays (including some of your favorite traditions) while having a healthy mindset that you can use into the New Year.
Here are some tips to get started:
Recognize set-ups for over-indulging. Many times when it comes to celebrations or social events (any time of the year), we think “save up” and restrict our intake leading up to the event. Restricting leaves us feeling deprived and ultimately results in overeating and negative emotions associated with doing so.
Be aware of the tendency to paint foods as “good” or “bad”. Certainly, some foods are more nutrient-rich than others. But, “good” and “bad” labels can result in feelings of guilt and shame around eating. This can be very stressful and take the joy out of any time of the year!
Enjoy a decadent dessert….if you really want it. Don’t feel anxious or guilty about these food choices. Rather, ask yourself, “Do I really want ______?” (You fill in the blank.) If the answer is yes, eat it thoughtfully and ENJOY E-V-E-R-Y BITE!
Remember, what you do most of the time is what has the biggest impact on your health. Develop a sustainable eating pattern that you not only enjoy but leaves you feeling good physically and mentally, during the holidays and all year long.
Engage in other healthy behaviors that help keep you resilient, refreshed and energized. Some examples include: exercise you enjoy, limit alcohol, enjoyable activities, adequate sleep and spending time with people you care about.
Build in support. Creating healthy habits is easier with the support of others who believe in you!