The holidays can make healthy living a challenge. With all the hustle and bustle, you may find yourself out of your routine and frequently facing temptation. But be of good cheer. Help is here. We’ve put together some tips you can try to make your holidays healthy and happy.
Eat, drink and be healthy
View the season through a lens of balance. All-or-nothing thinking could leave you feeling deprived or over-indulged. Go ahead and enjoy the fun food and drinks. But just do it in moderation. Here are some things to try:
- Eat a little before going to an event where food will be served. Fill up on veggies and some lean protein before you arrive. This can help you enjoy smaller portions of more high-calorie holiday fare.
- Attending a gathering at someone’s home? Offer to bring a dish. Then, make it a healthy one.1 Try these ideas for healthy holiday dessert swaps.
- Slow down and pay attention to what you’re eating. Your brain takes at least 20 minutes to realize you’re full.1
Triumph over temptation
If you feel tempted to splurge, remove yourself from the temptation. If you’re near the food that’s occupying your thoughts, get away from it. Get it out of sight. Distract yourself. If you’re at a party, start a conversation with someone. If you’re home alone, go outside for a quick walk, run an errand, start a new task, etc. This is a case where out-of-sight, out-of-mind might work well.
Want more support with nutrition during the holidays or any time of the year? Talk with one of our registered dietitians by phone or video. Schedule your visit 7 days a week.
Mix it up and mingle
Mix up your workout routine and enjoy being social. Be creative about getting together with friends. Suggest some fun activities in lieu of meeting for a drink or dinner. Go ice skating, skiing or sledding. Take a walk to look at holiday lights instead of a drive.2 You could even gather to build a snowman or have a snowball fight.
Plan ahead to stay healthy while you travel. Pack your own food and drinks. And, add activity to your itinerary:
- Choose water or low-calorie drinks over sugary versions. Want to add interest? Try a flavored sparkling beverage. Or add your own flavoring. Cucumbers, lemon and lime are great enhancements.
- Pack healthy snacks. Fruits, nuts and portable veggies are good options.
- If you’re driving, stop every few hours for a little walk. If you’re flying, walk around the airport. If possible, walk instead of taking a tram or shuttle.3
- Staying overnight somewhere? All you need is a little bit of space to do body-weight exercises like pushups, squats, lunges and plank poses. You can add weight to your routine with canned food and bottled drinks.
Make moving merry
Look for ways to fit exercise into your holiday errands. Walk to the store or purposefully park far enough away to get a little movement in before you shop. Take a few laps around the mall. Opt for the stairs.2 Get creative!
Getting enough rest is one of the keys to staying healthy. Having a well-rested mind and body can help you be more readily able to fend off temptation. Try not to overextend yourself. And practice good self-care. Be present. Set boundaries. Also, keep your mental and emotional health in balance.4
Our Mental Health support is available from the comfort of your home. Check in if you need to.
Schedule a physical
It may seem unconventional to get a physical exam during the holiday season, but stay with us here. Doing so can help you stay motivated to keep up with your healthy routine. And being in good physical health can help you feel better about your whole self.
If you don’t already have a primary care doctor, consider finding one. Our Primary Care services make it easy. Learn more about Primary Care.
We hope you find these tips helpful. From all of us at Teladoc Health, we wish you very happy and healthy holidays.
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Learn more about how to travel healthy this holiday!
Published October 30, 2023