Holiday Eating II

As the holidays approach, so does my wish for your ongoing good health. In preparing for the eating and emotions that holidays bring, consider the following Holiday Survival Tips to help you achieve or maintain your well-deserved health commitment.

  • Feed and nourish every part of yourself during the holidays. Too often we overindulge our mental, emotional, and/or physical selves and starve our spiritual selves.
  • Take care of yourself before you concentrate on taking care of others. Feelings of being overwhelmed, anxious, frustrated, depressed, or angry often get “acted out” on your body through poor food choices.
  • Understand that too much alcohol and sugar can lead to mood swings, depression, sluggishness, and increased body fat stores.
  • Avoid fasting and feasting. Eat a light meal on time; eat moderately at big meals or buffets.
  • Identify non-food related gifts and activities (e.g. gift certificate for a massage, music, movie, or sporting event) that you would enjoy. Share that “wish list” with your family or friends.
  • Lower your expectations. There’s no such thing as the perfect meal, the perfect party, the perfect gift, or the perfect family.
  • Maintain your regular sleep, exercise, eating, and nutritional supplement routines. Don’t schedule so many activities that you skip the basics of taking care of yourself.
  • Plan ahead about how you’ll cope with uncomfortable family situations. Know what pushes your buttons and plan how you’ll respond (try humor) so you won’t get upset and run to “comfort foods.”
  • Don’t overeat to please others. One way to be gracious about “seconds” is to take smaller portions the first time.
  • Look in the mirror. Restate your commitment to your health and fitness. Your physical and emotional health is your most valuable asset. Remind yourself how well you’ve done in the past and how good you feel when you stay on track.
  • Instead of letting the holidays happen “to” you, make them happen “for” you.