and how to overcome them!
- “Great Aunt Judy made my favorite holiday cookies just for me. How can I pass those up?” Don’t let that one cookie blow your entire day or week! You can allow yourself a little treat, but just plan ahead. Look forward to and completely enjoy and savor that cookie if you plan to have it. Try to make the rest of the day as healthy as possible! You can also let your family know your goals and ask for their support. Maybe Aunt Judy could come up with a healthier alternative for you.
- “There are so many options and treats at all of the holiday parties.” Don’t go hungry! Have a healthy snack such as an apple and nuts before you go. That way, you aren’t too hungry when you get to the party and can make healthier decisions. Often you can find at least one healthy option.
- “There are NO healthy options at mom’s holiday dinners”. Bring a dish to share! Let mom know you will bring a salad or vegetable platter with hummus to help her out. That way you can load up on the vegetables to help with fullness and minimize the less healthy options. Plus you may be helping mom out! Also, take your time when eating. It can take a while for your stomach to signal to your brain that you are full. So focus on enjoying the company and eat slow!
- “Booze is everywhere!” There does tend to be more alcohol around during the holiday season. If you plan to indulge, try alternating your alcoholic beverages with water or sparkling soda so that you are staying hydrated. Avoid fancy mixed beverages which can double or triple the calories with sugary flavorings. Keep in mind, the calories from alcoholic beverages add up quickly and tend to make indulging in the holiday goodies much easier, so be careful with this one!
- “The stress of the holidays tend to ruin my healthy eating goals.” Holiday treats definitely can make you feel better in the short term, but can lead to grogginess and fatigue later in the day, not to mention feeling down on yourself. Try to remember this when making your decisions! Eating well will actually help decrease your stress, maintain your energy, and make you feel better in the long run. We all need more of that when trying to get through the business of the holidays! Also try to keep up with your sleep. This will greatly help to reduce stress levels.
- “I’m just too busy during the holidays to prepare healthy foods”. It can get a little crazy around this time. Do your best to be prepared. Try and do some meal prep on Sundays by cutting up lots of fruits and veggies, maybe preparing some chicken breasts and sweet potatoes in advance. Enlist the kids to help. Have nuts and protein bars readily available. If financially feasible, this may be a time to buy pre-prepared foods and vegetables at the store to make things more convenient. Meal delivery services such as Plated or Green Chef can deliver healthy meals which are quick to make. Cooksmarts is our favorite meal planning program so that you can do your grocery shopping and meal prepping on Sunday so weeknight meals are quick to throw together.
- “You can’t have the holidays without treats around!” Look for healthy substitutes! There are all sorts of healthier options you can make these days. At our recent baking class, we featured avocado chocolate mousse, black bean brownies, and high protein cheesecake balls. Have your friends try to guess the secret ingredients!
- “I’ll start my diet after the holidays.” Why wait? There is always another event, holiday, dinner, outing, or occasion around the corner. Start implementing healthier habits now to make it a lifestyle and not a diet. Give yourself the gift of taking care of your self!
Ultimately, try to enjoy your time with family and friends this holiday season. Do your best to continue focusing on your long term goals. Don’t let any holiday set backs derail your ultimate goal – a healthy you! Continue checking in with us throughout the holidays to help keep you on track.