Healthy Habits for the Holidays

Published Thursday, November 29, 2012 7:29 PM

No sooner does the last slice of Thanksgiving pumpkin pie disappear, when eggnog and holiday cookies dance onto the scene. If you're not careful, too much holly jolly can wreak havoc on your waistline and your health.

This holiday season commit to five simple steps to keep the healthy in your holidays.

Bottoms Up: Make water your go-to beverage throughout the holiday season; when you quaff lots of water along with holiday cocktails, you lessen the chance of overindulging and will feel better the next day. Plus water bottles also make a fun, useful hostess gift. For shopping ideas, click here and here.

Think Veggies: Hitting the veggie platter helps you resist the siren song of baked brie and holiday chocolates. When you fill up on crudités, you take the edge off your appetite, making it easier to say no to temptation. If your party is potluck, offer to bring the veggies to ensure a low-calorie, high fiber snack is on hand. For creative presentation ideas, this article has you covered.

A Long Winter's Nap: Too many late nights of holiday revelry or rushing around the mall can quickly take its toll. Do yourself a favor and protect your shut-eye so you can truly enjoy the season. Find it difficult to get your zzz's during the holiday hubbub? Better your odds of a good night's sleep by relaxing for an hour before bed rather than doing chores or working and by sticking to a regular sleep routine. And use power naps to make up for lost slumber. For more tips on healthy holiday sleep habits, read 6 Ways to Sleep Better During the Holidays. 

Ice Skating Anyone?: Increase your holiday stamina by devoting time to activities that recharge your batteries such as exercise and mediation. When you can, incorporate exercise into your holiday plans; instead of cocktails with friends, suggest an ice skating outing. Or have your family take a hike instead of seeing the latest holiday blockbuster. Schedule blocks of solo exercise each day as well. Even a brisk 20 minute walk daily will improve your mood, help with sleep and keep the pounds and stress at bay.

Indulge When You Can: Deprivation is never any fun, especially around the holidays. Allow yourself to indulge in those little treats that make the season special. After all, the holidays only roll around once a year and treating yourself to small luxuries can help stave off overindulgence later on. And many holiday treats - such as red wine and dark chocolate - also have health benefits - as long as they are consumed in moderation. So go ahead, enjoy, it's good for your health!



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