The holidays can be a loaded time: food is everywhere, emotions are flying and we often feel totally out of control. Many of us even “give up” and just expect to gain 15 pounds and feel terrible throughout the holiday season. Guess what? It doesn’t have to be that way, and you can totally still enjoy your favorite foods.
Read on to learn how to stay radiant and energized and maintain your ideal weight through the merry months. Keep this pocket guide handy for a totally delicious, abundant and healthy holiday season:
1. Eat protein every 3-4 hours.
Maintaining steady blood sugar levels will help you avoid cravings, keep your energy up and stay present with your loved ones.
2. Be picky.
Only eat the stuff you REALLY love. If you take a bite of something and it's not mind-blowingly good, put it down, or give it to someone else. You don't have to eat everything.
3. Be a giver.
Contribute something healthy that you LOVE. Even if it's just a crudite platter or fruit salad, your healthy addition will be much appreciated, and help you keep portions of the rich stuff moderate.
4. Drink 1-2 glasses of water for every alcoholic drink you have.
Bonus points for adding a splash of apple cider vinegar, which will balance the effects of alcohol and promote a healthy ratio of bacteria in your gut.
5. Shift the focus to family.
The holidays are really about sharing love and prosperity. Shift your focus to engaging in great conversations with relatives and really connecting. Food comes second.
6. Keep up your supplement routine.
Magnesium, B12 and fish oil are especially important around the holidays. Magnesium keeps your digestion and circulation moving, B12 reduces cortisol — the pesky stress hormone that promotes weight gain and retention — and fish oil supports cognitive health and weight maintenance, plus so much more.
7. Acknowledge your emotions.
Are you mad at a relative? Disappointed someone didn't make it to Christmas dinner this year? Don't react by eating. Accept and nurture yourself and your emotions fully. Get honest. Take a hot bath, do some yoga, and really allow yourself to unwind mentally to avoid emotional eating.
8. Meditate for 20 minutes twice daily.
This will help you slow down, make smart food choices, and have great interaction with family. A clear mind goes a LONG way. If you’re new to meditation, start with 10 minutes then build your way up. Find a guided meditation or mantra that you love, and stick to it.
9. Move your body daily.
Get in at least a little movement every day. Maybe it's just a walk, some stretches and/or some yoga postures. Dancing counts too! When you're connected with your body, you're less likely to overeat.
10. Grab some green juice.
Keep up your green juice routine, or start one if you don’t already indulge in the green goodness. These magic liquids will clear your mind and balance your cravings.
11. Be an instigator.
Suggest a family walk after meals, and encourage healthy habits by setting a great example. Be a leader!
Now I’d love to hear from you! How do you handle the holidays? Please share in the comments. If you’re looking for more support through the holiday season, shoot me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.