It’s impossible not to indulge, and in many cases, overindulge in all the treats on display around you during the holidays.
Absolutely everywhere you go, from office parties, to dinners at your in-laws, to your local grocery store, there are juicy, buttery, sugary food items tempting you, ready to hit your taste buds. It can be challenging to stop the parade of plump turkeys, Swiss chocolates, endless eggnogs, mountains of mashed potatoes and seasonal micro-brew ales from sliding down into your warm, inviting belly. Heck, you’ve worked hard all year; you deserve some down time and a few treats. After all, food and festivity is the essence of the holidays.
BUT, there is a way to enjoy all the deliciousness that the season have to offer, without gaining 10 pounds of excess weight and guilt along the way.
Here at Mountain Trek we’ve come up with some simple, effective tips to help you avoid the dreaded OVERINDULGENCE…while still having fun and enjoying the festive season.
Keep exercising. You don’t need to maintain the same schedule as you did throughout the rest of the year, but you don’t need to stop exercising altogether as well. Often you’ll find you do have some extra time over the holidays, try snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, jogging or to a yoga class. Ask your relatives to go for a walk with you. That way you’re getting some exercise and so is your favorite uncle.
Stick to your regular meal times. Healthy snacking is good but it’s easy to eat full meals at every party you attend. Try eating dinner at one party and then a few hours later, desert at another party. Spreading out your meals will mentally help you to avoid overindulging.
Make healthy food choices. With all the delicious treats around you it’s easy to forget about vegetables, salads and fruit. And if you’re the one doing the cooking, try using fresh, lean, organic ingredients. Instead of frying, grill your food. And remember, there is a host of low-fat, vegetarian and vegan dishes (including desserts) that can compliment the usual turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoe dinners.
Leave what you don’t want. Despite what our parents may have instilled in us as children, don’t feel obliged to clear your plate. When you’re feeling 80% full, stop eating. Simple as that.
Budget your food choices. If you can’t stop yourself from overindulging on turkey and stuffing, then skip the ice-cream and apple pie.
Be mindful of your alcohol intake. Remember, drinks have calories too. Alcohol can make you hungry and weaken your ability to say no to overindulging. Alcohol is a depressant and can add to feelings of stress or sadness, thus leading you to make poor food choices. And if you drink too close to bedtime it can interfere with getting a good night’s sleep.
Stay strong. Be assertive. Don’t feel as though you have to say yes to everyone that offers you food and drink. If you are not hungry, then politely say so. Do not let yourself be bullied by your auntie or grannie, into eating something that you really don’t want.
Don’t over schedule yourself. While this may not necessarily stop you from overindulging, it will help you to focus on what’s most important about the holiday season–spending quality time with loved ones. And remember, everything in moderation.
Happy holidays from everyone at Mountain Trek!