Tips to Help Avoid or at Least Understand the Pitfalls of Holiday Eating
Seasons greetings to you all! I love this time of year. Family and friends gather. Our table is full of laughter and beautiful food and so is my office.
If you’re like me, you may have been disciplined and considerate about what you’ve been eating and drinking all year long. Maybe you started a nutritional goal last January and have been doing really well at keeping your promises to yourself. But now, we’re in the holiday season, and you’re feeling the pressure. It’s tough to stay steadfast to our goals when our grocery stores, our offices, and our homes become storage areas for sugary, buttery, fatty foods and snacks.
The only way to avoid the pitfalls of holiday food and eating is to stay home and pretend the holidays don’t exist. Clearly, there’s no fun in that. Nor would you be immune to the colorful and appetite-inducing advertising from the television or internet. So, I thought I would write a couple of easy tips to help ease the struggle of holiday food pressure.
#1 Don’t Skip Meals
Your busy schedule just got a lot busier. Skipping meals leads to grabbing the closest thing near you, and this time of year, it’s likely going
to be the fudge your neighbor made and brought over. Avoid waiting all day to eat before the big family meal. Keep your body and your brain in a happy status by snacking on a piece of fruit. Trust me, you won’t ruin your dinner by having
a healthy snack.
#2 Monitor Your Sugar and Salt Intake
Both of these ingredients are used in abundance during this time of year. Although they are delicious, realize that sugar and salt begets more sugar and salt. I know the homemade chocolate chip cookie you ate yesterday was yesterday, but eating another today will most likely signal the pleasure center in your brain to eat another and another.
#3 Still Hungry after Dinner
I love nothing more than having a big holiday meal, waiting an hour or so, and then going back for more! While there is nothing wrong with that and certainly nothing wrong with enjoying food, just keep in mind how much you did, in fact, eat, and ask yourself, “Am I really still hungry, or am I just getting more because…?”
#4 Drink Plenty of Water
Water helps digest food, keeps your gut moving, and helps to flush the sugar, salt, and fat from your body. Squeeze a little lemon in your water for an extra boost to hydrating and detoxifying your body.
#5 You Aren’t Rude If You Don’t Eat It
Don’t feel bad or feel that you’re being rude if you choose not to put something on your plate that you don’t like or doesn’t work with your diet. I know those dinner rolls look good, but if you’re gluten-free, you know you’ll be paying for the decision later. You aren’t rude; you’re just conscientious. Using the adage “It’s the holidays; I’m allowed” only hurts you if you’re ingredient intolerant or on a nutrition plan.
#6 Add This Secret Ingredient to Your Meals
What if I told you that by taking a simple daily supplement you could reduce your after-holiday-meal gas, bloating, and heartburn, would you be interested? I take probiotics every day, and I love it! My gut feels good, and I feel good. During the holidays, I will undoubtedly increase my caloric intake; therefore, I will also increase my probiotics. Probiotics make your gut happy by aiding in the digestion of your food.
#7 Have Fun!
Don’t forget to have fun, create new memories with your family and friends, and enjoy being around food. Food is, after all, what brings people together and is symbolic of how we show appreciation for each other. Relax in knowing that you don’t have to consume just because everyone else is.
I hope that this year was a good year for you and your family. I would like to say thank you to our readers. My pharmacy staff and I strive to bring you useful information that hopefully can be of benefit to you or someone you love. If nothing else, we hope that your curiosity is piqued. My pharmacy and staff are always here to help you in any way we can. Happy holidays, and we wish you a safe and healthy new year.