Now that the triad of food-centered holidays is surrounding us, it can be difficult to follow the healthy routines we've created for ourselves to follow. All the leftover Halloween candy along with the pies, turkey and extra calories in the coming weeks are enough to push us into the eye of the storm. But there are subtle ways to overcome these temptations and make it out of the Bermuda Triangle of food holidays without sacrificing all our health and wellness goals.
Surviving the Food Holidays Tips:
- Setting Intentions: Before attending any dinner or event decide how you want to feel at the end of the evening. Setting an intention helps enhance healthier decision-making.
- Out of Sight Out of Mind: Minimize environmental triggers by socializing away from the food.
- Buffet Reconnaissance: Survey all the available food at a buffet-style dinner before picking up your plate. This way you will know exactly what you want before having to walk the gauntlet.
- Bring Insurance: If you offer to bring a dish to a party, bring something you know is on your food plan, thus ensuring you have at least one healthy choice.
- Check-In: Mid-meal check in with your fullness level. Let your head catch up with your stomach with a 3-5 minute eating interlude.
- Feed Your Brain: Your brain is primed for pleasure when it comes to holiday meals. Help your brain reach satiety faster by taking several bites of the part of the meal that you like the most. This is not the time to save the best for last.
- Turn Down The Volume: Make a commitment to enjoy your first go-round of yumminess. Decide not to go back for seconds all through the holiday season in order to minimize volume eating.
- Wine Warning: Minimize calories and unhealthy choices produced with alcohol consumption by having a non-alcoholic drink spacer between cocktails. Try sparkling water with lime in between each glass of wine.
- Be Leftover Savvy: Take or package all your holiday leftovers in single portion containers so that you won’t be tempted to overeat the following day.
- Last But Not Least: Holiday meals as special as Thanksgiving come only once a year so savor every bite by focusing on mindful eating. Give the food the reverence it desires. Put your fork down in between bites. Take in the sight and the aroma of the meal before diving in. Reflect on gratitude for the bounty before you.