Thanksgiving is around the corner and temptations are everywhere, not to mention feelings of excitement, stress, and anxiety many of us feel this time of year. There's an abundance of festive parties, holiday dinners, family, work, and the average reported weight gain is anywhere from 5-10 pounds from Thanksgiving to New Years. So what are some ways to enjoy the holidays while staying sane and healthy? A little preparation is key!
It's really important to create balance by making the time for self-care. Start your day with 5-10 minutes of meditation to reduce anxiety and muscle tension or get moving! This could be exercise or something simple like stretching, walking, cleaning, etc. Whatever it is, create sacred time for YOU.
Don't Skip Breakfast! While you may think saving a few hundred calories for the big meal later makes sense, skipping and starving does just the opposite. A small meal in the morning can help give you more control over your appetite. Start your day with something that combines some protein, fiber, and healthy fat. (An egg with whole wheat toast, oatmeal with low-fat milk, greek yogurt with flaxseeds)
This is the holidays and you've waited all year for your favorite treats, so have them and enjoy! Check out what's available and choose what you really want. Have an appetizer plate or napkin and select what you can't live without. Be mindful when eating, chew your food thoroughly, and put your fork down between bites. Fill your plate with 50% vegetables, 25% protein, 25% whole grains to add to your feeling of fullness.
Start your day with water and drink plenty of it throughout the day. Go easy on the alcohol and don't forget alcohol calories add up quickly. Choose wine or vodka with club soda on the rocks and have a glass of water between alcoholic beverages to stay hydrated.
With so much focus on food, we tend to forget what the holidays are about. Create the focus around family and loved ones, great conversation and quality time together. Consider how much nourishment you receive from spending time with your loved ones and allow the food to be a second source of nourishment. (food for thought :))
Give Yourself A Break
Hey look... it's the holidays and we're all trying to manage extra temptations, busy schedules, and stress; so be kind and practice compassion with yourself and others. Focus on weight maintenance not weight loss around this time of year and do the best you can. If you overdo it at a holiday dinner or party, try not to beat yourself up over it. After all, we're all perfectly imperfect or otherwise human.