The experts at The Cleveland Clinic created this healthy holiday eating infographic to show us how we can enjoy the holidays to the fullest without adding pounds. Here are their tips on squeezing in exercise, cheating on your meal plan, handling temptations, strategies for food pushers, making smart food choices at parties, and more. Try all eight tips throughout the holiday season, and feel free to pin it for future use!
Check out our infographic on how to make healthy soup here!
Healthy Holiday Eating Tips
Exercise, Exercise, Exercise!
The first tip to help you avoid weight gain over the holidays is to get plenty of exercise and get moving, wherever you are. Even if the weather is cold outside, you can still find ways to workout in your home or indoors. Consider doing situps or pushups in between TV commercials or walking around the mall. These suggestions may seem small, but the more you move really makes a difference and helps you to keep the extra holiday pounds away!
Give your Diet some Wiggle Room.
While you should keep track of what you’re eating each day, it’s not realistic to always eat perfectly, especially over the holidays. Allow yourself a small daily treat, like a Hershey’s Kiss, so that you feel satisfied each day and don’t wind up scarfing down 10 cookies in one sitting.
Rule Out Temptation.
It might not be easy, but it can be done. If you bake, try giving away your desserts instead of munching on them for the next week. Or, avoid the candy aisle at the grocery store to avoid making unhealthy purchases. With a little effort, you won’t even realize what you’re missing.
Load Up on Fruits & Vegetables.
Packed with essential vitamins and minerals, fruits and veggies will help you get the nutrients you need to keep your immune system strong this time of year. And, eating them will help you feel fuller for longer periods of time. Reach for seven or more servings of both per day.
Don’t Go Hungry!
One of the most important healthy holiday eating tips is to avoid going hungry, especially when going to a party or gathering where there is plenty of unhealthy foods to choose from – which can cause you to overeat. Instead, pack a healthy trail mix so you have something nourishing to snack on, or have a small snack before you leave home.
Make Smart Choices.
Smart, simple choices can make a huge impact. Instead of filling up on heavy meat and cheese platters, opt for a vegetable crudite or roasted sweet potatoes. For dessert, try eating fresh fruit rather than sugary candies and desserts.
Learn How to Say No.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to consume every decadent cookie or cake that comes your way! Learn how to say no sometimes, just be sure to do it politely.
Don’t Focus on Food!
While it might be tempting, make it a point to focus less on the food this holiday season and more on socializing with other guests. This will help you avoid filling up too much, and will help keep you realize what truly is the best part of this time of year: time spent together with friends and family.