Post Updated: December 11, 2019
What feelings do the holidays raise for you? Many say they love this time of year. But at the same time, those same people also feel a lot of stress with the additional travel, family time, food, and fear of gaining weight.
Can you relate to the cycle of feeling stressed, overeating, feeling bloated, feeling unhealthy, and wanting to “throw in the towel”? Then these tips will help you.
Resist giving into this perpetual cycle that makes you tired, moody, and stressed. Instead make an intention to take control of your actions and your health daily so that you can move into the New Year feeling amazing — because you are!
Healthy Holidays Daily Checklist
Move early. Start your day off on a good note with 20-30 minutes of some exercise. Even a short run or walk is perfect. You’ll feel better mentally and physically. And don’t put off until later because if you’re like me, it won’t happen. Hey, maybe it’s time to work in that 5-10-15 Minute Flow Adrien talks about!?
Don’t skip meals to try to “save your calories” for a big meal or an upcoming party. Don’t try to starve yourself because the more you slow down and eat throughout the day, the more you can slow down and enjoy your dinner and not overeat.
Drink water. Start your day with 12 ounces of warm lemon water rather than coffee or nothing at all.
Eat to feel nourished, not to feel stuffed. The food will always be there, so you don’t have to eat it as if it’s never going to be there again. Eat, live, and think every day of the holiday season as if you are already at your goal weight. This is NOT a time to restrict or diet. REPEAT: This is not a time to curb your eating.
Support your digestion. One thing that can really throw off your mood and make you say “screw it” when it comes to not overeating is feeling bloated. Feeling bloated is uncomfortable and makes you feel crappy. You feel so crappy that you just eat more because you really don’t care at this point. Use the tips below so that you keep your tummy and your mood happy.
Supporting your digestion during this time of year (and all the time) is really a solid foundation for your health. In addition to the daily checklist above, keep these tips in mind when you are eating throughout the holiday season.
Healthy Digestion Tips
- Sit when you eat. Your body needs to be in a completely relaxed, rest, and digest mode. This starts with sitting. Don’t mindlessly pop things in your mouth while standing in the kitchen (or at a party!), and if you do… see tip #3!
- Eat your proteins and veggies first. They are more satiating which means your body knows it’s getting what it needs and you’ll be less likely to down the rolls and leave your belly feeling bloated.
- Chew your food until it is almost liquid. Basically, chew more than you feel like you should. This will help you to slow down (to get in that rest and digest mode), and it will also help you break down the food before it even hits your stomach, which means less bloat. This can also help you if you have acid reflux.
- Watch the combinations of sugar, carbs, and alcohol. Combing all of these can wreak havoc on your gut flora and cause the bacteria to move to places it shouldn’t be — which means more time on the toilet or just feeling bloated.
- Drink water (from above) but don’t CHUG it with your meals. Too much can dilute your stomach acid and digestive enzymes.
The holidays should not be a time when we’re worried about eating this or that or making food a big deal at all. Just. Eat. Enjoy the food, your family, friends, and the experiences. This is just a time of year when your routine is different — not a permanent habit or a lifestyle that will impact your health long term. Celebrate, connect, enjoy, and be thankful!
If you struggle with stress during the holidays, overeating, bloating, and fear weight gain or body image issues, we would love to help you get through it.
Alexandria Wellness members get ongoing nutrition support from our Alexandria Wellness coaches, membership site, and a private Facebook Community. If you feel like you want more individual accountability and support, you can apply for Adrien’s Concierge program.