The holiday season is a great time to connect with friends and family. However, it can also be a busy time, which can cause us to put our healthy routines aside. It’s easy to be tempted by indulgent treats and rich meals at all those holiday gatherings. But don’t worry, you can still indulge a little and enjoy yourself without going overboard.
It’s All About Balance
When you’re faced with a schedule full of events, the easiest way to make sure you stay on track is to plan ahead. If you’re going to a dinner where you expect to eat a rich meal, stick to lighter meals earlier in the day. It also helps to balance your meals by including some healthy fruits and veggies whenever you can.
Respect Your Dietary Restrictions
Many seniors follow special diets for health reasons. While it’s okay to have a few treats and enjoy some comfort foods, stay mindful of staying away from ingredients you know you can’t have. For example, if your doctor has you on a low sodium diet, make sure you don’t load up on salty snacks. It can be hard to stick to a diet when your usual options aren’t around, but you can choose the healthiest options available.
Shrink Your Plate
The easiest way to stay happy over the holidays is to make sure you don’t overindulge. One of the best ways to do this is to use a smaller plate. This little visual trick makes you feel like you’re getting a full amount, since you can fill up your plate with less food than it would normally take. It also prompts you to be more careful about your choices. Pick 3 or 4 items you really want, and leave the rest.
Everything in Moderation
Moderation is especially important if you decide to indulge over the holidays. A great way to practice moderation with rich food, desserts, and drinks is to allow yourself one treat and then switch over to something on the healthier side. If you plan to drink, make sure you check your medications before you have a drink to ensure it’s safe to have alcohol while you’re taking it.
Practicing moderation extends beyond just your diet, too. When your regular schedule is disrupted, you can feel a little overwhelmed. Make sure you take the time to get the rest you need during the season. Remember, you don’t have to accept every invitation you receive. It’s okay to say no – only commit to what you know you can handle, and make sure you take the time to rest up when you need it.
Keep Up with Your Exercise Routine
When your schedule suddenly gets busier than normal, it’s easy to put off your fitness regime. However, putting off your regular routine can leave you feeling not so great. Making the time to exercise can help prevent you from packing on a few extra pounds, and it can help reduce any added stress you might experience during the busy holiday season.
If snow and icy conditions prevent you from doing your normal outdoor activities, try moving your workouts indoors. Look for an exercise class close by, or go for a walk around an indoor mall.
If you take these tips into consideration, you’ll be sure to have a healthy and happy holiday season.