Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, and other fun holidays are just around the corner, and you know what that means: more tips for staying healthy during all the festivities! Truly, every holiday that comes around presents a new challenge to maintaining healthy habits and diets. We often just want to get lost in the sugary indulgences surrounding us during the holidays and take a step away from our fitness routines, and doing so on occasion won’t sabotage our goals in the long term. If you want to incorporate more healthy habits into your holidays, however, and set yourself up for success in 2017, here are a few tips to stay on track.
Prepare a Healthy Dinner
While perhaps not having the same grandeur as the Thanksgiving feast, winter holiday dinners often feature similarly high-fat and high-carb choices. To mix things up in a healthy way, enjoy maple-roasted sweet potatoes or try substituting mashed potatoes with mashed cauliflower. If you want to reduce fat intake, turkey is always an excellent centerpiece that is rich in protein and can be lower in fat and calories than chicken.
Enjoy Healthier Sweets
The holidays are all about the sweets! We cram them in our stockings, coat them with sugary icing, and then jam them into our mouths for a high-sugar and high-fat explosion. For healthier options, consider this tasty holiday white chocolate bark, full of fruits, nuts, and all sorts of goodness. Also try making your sugar cookies just a little bit lighter by using this whole wheat cookie recipe.
It is easy to zip through the holiday season without taking a second to reflect on the relationships and resources in our lives, especially the ones that we often take for granted like our families, homes, and food. When we do, however, we also realize that others in our community may not be as fortunate. This time of year can be hard for those struggling with financial instability or food insecurity, and so it is a prime opportunity for giving back and helping those in need.. One suggestion is to donate or volunteer with Three Square, Southern Nevada’s largest food bank, or refer someone in need to one of their pantries and distribution sites. Research suggests that “giving back” benefits people not just mentally but also physically, lowering blood pressure and the risk for heart attacks. Most of all, a life can be saved, changed, and set onto a path toward wellness, so definitely get out into your community and lend a helping hand this holiday season.
Have a healthy, warm, and Merry Christmas!