Thanksgiving is right around the corner and there is so much to be thankful for like family, friends and good food. However, when those three blessings come together, it can become difficult to get through a holiday gathering while still sticking to your health and wellness goals.
Here are some tips for surviving the upcoming holidays this season.
Write down your goals. Thinking of your diet and fitness goals is one thing, but seeing your goals written down will serve as a strong reminder of what you are working hard to accomplish-a healthy lifestyle!
Pack healthy snacks. Holiday gatherings usually require travel to spend time with family and friends. Be sure to plan accordingly and pack some healthy snacks for the road. You do not want to fall victim to “hanger” (anger caused by hunger) and be forced to grab something from the nearest quick service restaurant along the highway.
Offer to cook or bring a healthy dish to share. Anyone hosting at the holidays will appreciate an extra hand in the kitchen or a dish to pass. Introduce your loved ones to your favorite healthy appetizer or dessert or if you are really feeling motivated, both. You will be able to enjoy and not feel guilty indulging in something you know is healthy.
Eat only at mealtime. It may be difficult to pass on a taste test in the kitchen or avoid grabbing a handful of nuts & M&Ms on your way back to the party, but those calories can add up quickly. Leave those calories for the holiday meal and enjoy the meal when gathered around the table.
Graciously learn how to say no. Second servings may be difficult to pass up, especially when your mom’s homemade mashed potatoes are your favorite side dish. Say this instead: “Although they are delicious, I am afraid I won’t have any room for a slice of Grandma’s homemade pecan pie. But I would love a serving to go.” This way you are not refusing your favorite, but are planning to enjoy later.
Plan your meal accordingly. If you know you cannot resist the side of stuffing, be sure to pass on the dinner roll and butter with the salad course. Learn to pick and choose wisely!
Move away from the food. Picking a spot right by the dessert table will make it hard to resist multiple trips. Choose your favorite sweet and set up camp far away from the treats. Take this time to catch up with a close friend or family member instead.
Don’t let the holidays derail your health and wellness goals. Take the time to plan accordingly and work on that will power in order to set yourself up for holiday success!
With assistance from future RDN Ashley Martens.