The rush of the winter holidays can make it challenging to stick to good nutritional habits. Many things can divert us from our best intentions. All sorts of social events, tempting treats, last-minute shopping excursions, travelling out of town… these holiday extras may interfere with our regular eating habits and derail a healthy diet. This season, try out these tips for healthful and happy holiday feasting.
Hit the grocery stores. Stock your shelves with healthy, can’t-miss foods. During this hectic season, it’s common to feel run down, so it is especially important to maintain a healthy nutrient intake. Keep fresh fruit and vegetables on hand, and stash away some hearty, beneficial snacks, such as nuts, trail mixes, or dried fruits.
Don’t skip meals. Especially not breakfast! A healthy and power-packed breakfast could include fruits, whole grains, and some protein. A warm bowl of oatmeal with berries and almonds will get you far even on the most frantic of days. Missing out on regular meals will only make you hungrier later on and more likely to indulge in unhealthy foods – the hors d’oeuvres at an after-work party, or the quick fix of pizza or fries on the way.
Brown bag it. Ensure you fuel up with a nourishing lunch each day by bringing it from home. Steal a few minutes the night before to pack a good lunch. A complete and nutritious meal could be something as simple as a vegetable and bean soup, a whole-grain roll, and a cup of yogurt. It’s simple, but it meets your daily requirements of all four food groups. By organizing this in advance, you’ll avoid a last-minute morning scramble that might substitute handy snacks for healthy food.
Pace yourself. Holiday treats are often delicious – but not nutritious. At social events, try to pace yourself when faced with tempting goodies. Seek out healthier food choices, such as the fresh fruit or veggie tray. Allow yourself to partake of a couple of the “naughtier” holiday delicacies, but do so in moderation. Opt for a small portion, take your time, and really savour each bit of the richer, sweeter treats. The slower you eat, the fuller and more satisfied you will feel.
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