Happy and Healthy Holidays

 

During the holidays, it can be challenging to stay healthy.  From all the parties and food, to less time for exercise and sleep, the holidays can take a toll on our health.  Here are the best tips and tricks to keep healthy this holiday season. 

Nutrition

  • Avoid skipping meals - Eating regular, nutritious meals will help keep your appetite controlled and are then likely to overeat less at holiday parties. 
  • Create a Healthy Plate - Fill half of your plates with fruits and veggies and always include a protein food.  Lean proteins help to balance carbohydrate-rich foods, avoiding blood sugar spikes and help you feel full longer.  Opt for lean meats, poultry, seafood, cheese, and nuts
  • Have everything you love ... in moderation - Since thinking of certain foods as “forbidden” can lead to overeating, instead, give yourself permission to enjoy the foods and beverages you love and look forward to every year.  Knowing you can eat these actually helps people eat smaller portions!
  • Portion size is key - Using smaller plates, bowls, and cups/glasses provides portion control and may lead to greater satisfaction since you can enjoy the entire serving. 
  • Bring a healthy dish to share - Bring a healthy dish that you enjoy to share with family and friends at gatherings.  This will ensure there is a healthy option for you to eat!
  • Slow down - Did you know it can take up to 20 minutes for you to realize you are full?! Take time when eating since slowing down can result in eating less … and better conversations with those around you!

Physical Activity

  • Stay active - Balance your calories from food and beverages with exercise!  Whether a friendly football game, walking around the mall, or running a holiday themed 5k, find physical activities you enjoy.  Even 10 minutes adds up over the course of the day!
  • Walk when you can - In addition to intentional physical activity, park further away from the stores or take and extra lap and walk around at parties vs sitting down to get extra steps.

Sleep

  • Get sleep - Seven to eight hours of sleep per night will benefit your health in many ways including helping you have better control of your appetite and make healthier food choices.  When we do not get adequate sleep, we are often hungrier and easily tempted by less nutritious foods.    

Here is one of our favorite holiday dishes that is great for taking and sharing at holiday gatherings: 

Greek Cucumber Rolls
Recipe from Delish

Ingredients

  • 1 large cucumber
  • 1/3 c. hummus
  • 1/4 c. crumbled feta
  • 1/4 c. chopped Kalamata olives
  • 1/4 c. chopped cherry tomatoes
  • Small sprigs fresh dill
  • Lemon wedges (optional)

Directions

  1. Using a vegetable peeler, slice cucumber into thin flat strips. Lay slices down on paper towels to drain excess moisture.
  2. On a cutting board or clean work surface, lay two slices on top of each other. Spread a thin layer of hummus on top of each slice, then sprinkle feta, Kalamata olives, and cherry tomatoes on top.
  3. Tightly roll each cucumber slice. Stick a small sprig of dill into each roll. Squeeze fresh lemon juice on top, if using.

Have a happy, healthy holiday season!


"This medical and/or nutritional information is not intended to be a substitute for individual advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition."


Stephanie Edson Wellness Specialist SpartanNash

Stephanie Edson Regional Wellness Specialist
Stephanie is an award-winning registered dietitian who believes in empowering every individual to make nutritious food choices to support a healthy lifestyle. She believes in the power of food as medicine and loves sharing about nutrition with others.