We have all been in a situation where we feel like we cannot eat one more holiday meal. It feels like you are living in a constant state of being uncomfortably full for the entire month of December. Maybe you threw your diet out the window on Thanksgiving and decided to assess the damage on New Year’s Day when you make a vow to turn it all around and become the health warrior you are yearning to become. Or perhaps you decided to deprive yourself in preparation for the next feast, which only led to late-night sessions with the cookie jar. Whatever your struggle is with food during this time of year, it’s time to throw a wrench in the cycle and practice healthy and happy eating habits during the holidays.
Ditch the All or Nothing Attitude
The first step is to stop approaching the holidays with an all or nothing mentality. You’re either all in and you gorge yourself to uncomfortable levels whenever you get the chance, and then you try to recover with nothing. This sequence of yo-yo eating habits is not physically or emotionally healthy. Stop this approach by thinking of your holiday meals as just that; a meal. Of course, it is celebratory, and you should feel free to indulge in the food items that you might not typically eat, but this doesn’t mean that you should eat twice your normal amount. Instead, build your plate in a way that mostly resembles your typical plate size and food group division (i.e., ¼ protein, ¼ carbs, ½ veggies).
Stop Labelling Good or Bad
A lot of us tend to label food Good or Bad, but you should really ditch this way of looking at food. Why? When you tell yourself that a certain food like a holiday cookie or a piece of pie are “Bad”, then you increase your likelihood of overindulging on them when you’ve restricted them for so long, and then you will likely feel guilty for your indulgence later. Instead of Good or Bad, we encourage you to educate yourself on what a healthy and balanced diet should look like and try to follow one that makes you feel your best, while also allowing you to enjoy your favorite treats without any guilt.
Stay Balanced Every Day
Finally, to enjoy a healthy and happy holiday season, you should strive to maintain a nutrient-dense, balanced diet throughout the entire season (and beyond). Accomplish this by preparing healthy meals that you can easily eat throughout the week so you don’t start to shift towards the all or nothing mentality. Stay balanced and committed to eating well-balanced meals throughout the holiday season and we promise you will feel better, have more energy, and be absolutely guilt-free when it comes to indulging on celebratory occasions.
We hope these tips help you stay on track with your healthy lifestyle this holiday season and allow you to really enjoy the time you can spend with your loved ones.