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While sorting through my warm fuzzy feelings about the holidays…big family meals, holiday music, lights, toys, songs and treats…it’s hard to deny that there is a fair amount of temptation involved as well.  It seems everywhere you turn, there is another tin of cookies, box of chocolates, or lovingly made homemade candies delivered by a friend or family member.  Many people report weight gain over the holidays, which is the driving force behind copious New Year’s Resolutions.

At Body in Harmony, we prefer to plan ahead.  Avoid that temptation and handle holiday treats with grace!

Navigating Holiday Parties:

How can you attend a holiday party and still maintain control?  Fear not, we have tips for you!

  • Eat before you go. You don’t necessarily have to eat a whole meal, but a snack full of protein and fat will satiate you, making you less likely to overindulge at the party.
  • Ask the host or hostess if you can contribute a healthy dish or drinks to the festivities. Perhaps you are eating low-carb, or trying to avoid gluten and dairy.  Or perhaps you have a food allergy that most party food can’t accommodate.  Healthy party food recipes abound and this page has some good ideas to get you started.  You might also like to plan festive drinks that are not alcohol based.  Kombucha Mocktails are fizzy, delicious, and provide a boost of probiotics at the same time.
  • Try the Three Tablespoon Rule, in which you take a one-tablespoon serving of three treats, then fill the rest of your plate with healthier choices.
  • If seated, choose a chair facing away from the food.
  • Make the event about connecting with people instead of food. Seek out the chef, the baker, the decorator, and ask them about their work.  You will likely learn something new, have an enjoyable conversation, and the event will pass quickly.

Navigating the Busy Season:

The holiday season is always busy, even if you aren’t attending or planning parties.  Meal planning and preparing food ahead of time can keep us from falling back on a drive-thru.  A consult with our Nutrition Staff can help you develop healthy habits that will fit your busy lifestyle!

While we love to plan ahead, life sneaks up on all of us at times.  Having easy and healthy options on hand for those emergencies can be a real life-saver.  OPTAVIA is a healthy habits and lifestyle program that also provides many tools to assist you in sticking with your goals.  Did you know that Dr. Ziska is a Certified OPTAVIA Coach?  Book a complimentary consultation today to learn how OPTAVIA can help you navigate your busy life while still reaching your goals!

Meaningful Holidays in the Midst of a Pandemic:

No matter where we live, this holiday season is going to look a little different for many of us.  If you find yourself unable to join those you love in person, take advantage of the many free video call applications available.  You can still have an engaging party online.  We love some of these ideas for virtual holiday party activities.  If you aren’t comfortable with virtual calls, an old-fashioned phone call is still welcome.  The important thing is to make sure you connect with those you love if you can’t be with them.

In addition, there are still ways to volunteer your time or resources during the pandemic.  You might consider how you can help seniors in your area, with anything from meal preparation or delivery, to technology assistance.  Try contacting a local health system, food bank, or an area agency on aging, to find out how you can help.   You can also still find ways to give to others.   Local homeless shelters are still looking for volunteer help, with appropriate precautions in place.  Our local Adopt-A-Family program is still happening, and the need this year is greater than ever.

At Body in Harmony, we believe planning ahead can help us succeed at our health goals, and this is especially true when we are surrounded by food temptation.  In a time where the holidays look unusual, taking advantage of new tech, while giving of your time or resources, will help make this holiday season a great one!

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