With so much tempting food around, it’s easy to set aside healthy eating habits during the holiday season. You can always begin again in the new year, right?
While it’s true that starting over is better than giving up, it’s worth sticking to your healthy habits as much as you can during the holidays because it’ll help you feel better. Plus, you’ll enjoy countless other benefits, including clearer skin, relief from digestive issues, weight loss, and reduced inflammation.
Here are a few pointers for a happy and healthful holiday season.
Don’t deny yourself.
A healthy lifestyle is not an all-or-nothing proposition. A couple of Christmas cookies aren’t going to ruin your routine, just make sure you don’t eat the whole plate. Be mindful of your culinary weak spots. If you adore fruitcake, allow yourself to have a slice when you go out, but don’t keep any at home.
Indulge yourself with “smart” foods.
Holiday meals don’t have to be your downfall if you know how to eat wisely. For example, did you know that a protein-rich diet can help you feel full and eat less? In clinical studies, people who consumed low-carb, high-protein diets lost significantly more weight than people who followed only low-calorie diets. Another “smart” tip: It’s ok to forget about calorie counting and load up your plate with fruits, vegetables, protein, and whole grains. These four “smart” food families help your body maintain a steady blood sugar level, reducing your risk for diabetes and a bevy of other health problems while burning more fat.
When was the last time you devoted meal time to simply eating—no screens of any kind at the table? Carving out space to eat without distraction will help you pay attention to what you’re eating and how you’re eating it. Best of all, research indicates that mindful eating not only helps you to enjoy your food more, but also helps you to eat less!
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