Holidays are often stressful, but ideally they can be oases in time that nourish us emotionally and spiritually and reconnect us to our best selves and to one another. Taking a few minutes to think about life and your journey can reduce holiday stress by helping you focus on what's most important to you. When I first started my journey and the Holidays came I was worried. I had to attend 3 Thanksgiving dinners in four days. I planned ahead, here are some simple tips to help get you through the Holidays. By the way I lost .2 pounds every week through the holidays. Any weigh in with a minus is a good week, it all adds up.
* Always eat before attending a holiday bash. Eating a nutritious, healthy snack prior to the event will help you to curb your appetite and prevent overindulgence.
* Take a healthy appetizer or side. If you are worried there will be no healthy appetizers or sides at a party then take your own. You will look thoughtful to the host for bringing something to their party and feel at ease that you at least have a veggie tray there to snack on.
* Limit your intake of alcohol. Opt instead for light hot chocolate or a cup of hot tea, both of which can help you keep your hands and mouth busy while partying.
In the workplace:
* Put the candy bowl out of sight. Ask co-workers to place candy bowls in a desk drawer, a break room or in a cabinet.
* Bring healthy treats to work. Bring in apple slices with light caramel dip, little bags of homemade, air-popped popcorn or a fruit or veggie tray.
Scope out food options:
At buffet tables, scope out the options first. Make a mental note of what you’d like to eat, before you fill your plate. This way you can get a taste of everything you’d like to try and not feel deprived, but you won’t thoughtlessly pile all sorts of food on your plate.
Taste hors d’oeuvres:
When appetizers are being passed around, it’s easy to lose track of how much you’re eating. One strategy is to take a bite of an appetizer you’d like to try, and then put it down. You’ll get a taste, but you won’t get all the calories. Another strategy is to eat small appetizers and then eat veggies (ones which aren’t drowned in dressing or sauces) and other low-calorie crunchers. The third strategy is to choose only lean protein and low-fat items. For example, you’ll limit yourself to shrimp with cocktail sauce, chicken satay, or meatballs.
Nuts in shells. Believe it or not, studies show when you have to work for your food (cracking nutshells), you eat less. The same is true for candy. If you need to unwrap the candy, you’ll eat less.
You can enjoy the holidays without deprivation, eating all the foods you like, if you think before you eat, be a taster (don’t clean the plate), barter with yourself (choose one food and pass on another), and be active (clean the house, take a walk, or dance while you cook.) And remember food is not love. Don’t think that you’d be rude if you refuse to eat a hostess’s food. Don’t let people force food on you.
One last tip, I do this throughout the year...Ask yourself is that worth an additional twenty minutes on the trendmill?