My Healthy Holiday Survival Tips

In Healthy Lifestyle by Jennifer

The scent of pine. Long tables with platters overflowing with delicious food. The Nutcracker Ballet. Snowy pine tree branches. Tiny white sparkling lights. Roaring crackling fire. Cozy sweaters. Tall glowing Christmas tree decorated with tiny ornaments. Hugs and kisses. Spicy gingerbread men with raisin buttons. Time together to slow down and enjoy each other.

What comes to mind when you think of the holidays? Wonderful, warm thoughts for sure, but if you’ve been working on balancing yourself (your weight, cravings, mood, energy) the holidays can be a bit challenging. We don’t want to miss out on any of the fun so let’s try to figure out how to surround ourselves with some yummy good choices.

Offer to help out the hostess. Your friends and family will thank you and appreciate the healthy appetizer or dessert you bring to the holiday party. It’s always fun to discover new edible ideas. Pack up this for an hors d’oeuvre or take a festive platter of these for dessert.

Imagine getting a jump start on healthy eating habits for 2016! In between the family dinners and cocktail parties sneak in a glass of wellness. A carefully crafted veggie smoothie will balance the rich, sugary foods and help to curb your appetite. resulting in a more successful effort to just take a taste and control portions at the main holiday events. Sip a cup of this one chilled or this one warmed pre- or post-party.

It turns out there are some improvements we can make to traditional holiday fare that will help us feel not so guilty and not so gassy and bloated. Take egg nog for example. Ingredients like heavy cream, sugar, and bourbon can make us regret reaching for a dainty mug even before it’s even offered to us. Dairy can make our digestive system grumbly and sluggish, sugar throws off our good bacteria allowing yeast overgrowth, and alcohol leaves us dehydrated. If you’re still craving that spicy, creamy deliciousness but without the downside, try this superfood version.

Plan out your holiday cocktail. Maybe try a festive pink grapefruit juice or orange juice with seltzer, a lime wedge, and a few pomegranate seeds sprinkled in – vodka optional. But if you wake the next morning realizing you over did it on the alcohol, pour a big glass of coconut water for hydration and to replenish your electrolytes. Take a B vitamin complex because alcohol impairs the absorption of these nutrients. Alcoholic drinks also create havoc with your hormones and blood sugar level resulting in hypoglycemia and overeating. Stick to a combination of clean protein like organic chicken or wild salmon and some steamed greens and vegetables for the day. Head over to a yoga class to twist, invert, and detoxify your organs while calming your adrenal system and your mind.

A light snack like a cup of egg drop soup before departing will help you to stick to your eating plan when you arrive. At the party, look for foods containing good fats, veggies,  and some protein like hummus or guacamole + vegetables, crudité, mini crab cakes, steamed shrimp, or deviled eggs.

But if you end up having too much rich or salty fried food (or too much in general) recover with salads full of lots of raw vegetables drizzled with a little extra virgin olive oil and apple cider vinegar to help with digestion.