Holiday Healthy Tips
The holiday season is here! And for many of us that means lots of tasty food and more time at home. Whether you are a parent for a growing athlete or you are a young athlete yourself, the holidays can still be a great time to promote healthy eating habits that will lead to a more balanced lifestyle in the future.
Now we’re not saying that you should steer clear of all of your favorite foods, (because that is no fun). But here are some healthy tips to keep in mind that will promote your athletes growing muscles, bones and hormones.
This is something we should be mindful of year-round. But staying hydrated over the holidays can be extremely important with assisting your body with digestion and regulating your body’s ability to recognize when it’s full. After all, your body is made up of 75% water. And when you are dehydrated, your brain sometimes confuses that with hunger and can cause you to overeat and feel sluggish later.
Try carrying a water bottle around with you. And get into the habit of drinking water when you wake up and before you go to bed. Even placing a water bottle on your nightstand before bed is a great habit to form now. You wake up, and boom the water is there ready for you to drink.
Don’t Skip Meals Before the Thanksgiving Meal
Many of us have gotten into the habit of “saving our calories” for the big Thanksgiving meal. So we skip breakfast, possibly lunch, and then eat a large Thanksgiving Meal that can be 2-3 servings worth. When you do this, you tend to overeat, and you put added stress on your body to now process all of that food in a short period of time before you go back for seconds or thirds.
If your Thanksgiving meal is around dinner time, have two small meals. If your Thanksgiving meal is around lunch time, have one small breakfast. Here are some great options below.
- Egg omelet with vegetables and a side of toast
- ½ oatmeal with chia seeds, bananas or berries
- Couple slices of toast with nut butter and a side of fruit
- Avocado toast with a fried egg
- Greek yogurt with granola, and a side of fruit
Survey the Thanksgiving meal options before you plate your food.
Have you done this before? You go down the aisle of food and everything looks good, but by the time you get to the end, your plate is over flowing with a medley of food you would never eat together on a regular day. And you may or may not finish it, but you tend to go back for a second plate but this time since you know what you like, your plate doesn’t look as crazy.
By looking at the food ahead of time, you can plan what you’ll add to your plate. Use this time to load up on vegetables, and since you are eating lots of your favorite foods for the first time that day, vegetables are usually easier to eat when it’s accompanied with your favorite mac n cheese, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes etc.
Last but not least, be present with your family and put your devices away.
Let’s all practice being present with our families during the holidays. Not only will you enjoy your food more but studies show people over eat when they are distracted and they actually enjoy their food LESS. While the pandemic has changed up how many of us are spending the holidays, I think we have all realized how important family is. Put your phone away while you eat and see how much better your food tastes!
Try at least one of these tips next week and let us know how it worked out for you! For any follow up questions, feel free to reach out to me!
Nutritionist and Wellness Coach