Five Tips for Getting Through the Holidays in Good Health

Five Tips for Getting Through the Holidays in Good Health

As falling leaves give way to snow, ice, and endless holiday festivities, it's tempting to kick your weight loss plans to the curb. The choices you make this season, though, will affect how your body looks come swimsuit season. You don't have to go through the holidays in a permanent state of deprivation. Instead, the key to getting through this most challenging of all seasons for health is to embrace balance, remember the basics of healthy living, and keep your eye on your goals. Follow these five simple tips to escape winter looking better than ever.

 

Stay Active

Cold weather, little daylight, and the overwhelming temptation of a cozy couch can cause you to ditch your exercise plans. Winter, though, tends to provoke depression in some people because of decreased sunlight and fewer outdoor activities. Combat this by staying active. You don't have to be miserable when you exercise. Instead, find ways to make it fun. Throw snowballs with your dog, Go snowboarding. Sled with your kids. Take a nightly walk to look at holiday lights. When your active lifestyle is a fun one, you're more likely to stick to it.

 

Indulge (a Little)

Healthy diets aren't temporary endeavors you undertake until you lose weight. Instead, the right diet for you is one you can sustain for a lifetime. That means you can't perpetually deprive yourself. When you do, you're more likely to binge and less likely to lose weight. Instead, embrace small bits of holiday indulgences – a cookie here, a bite of pie there. This way you'll enjoy the holiday season without tipping the scales.

 

Focus on Loved Ones

The omnipresent rush of the holiday season is ostensibly about finding presents that will please the people you love the most. Too often, though, shopping causes us to neglect those we love the most. This stress, in turn, can cause you to over-eat and adopt other unhealthy habits, such as drinking to excess. Instead, resolve to focus on time with loved ones this season, rather than showing your love by buying things. Take your mom out for coffee or get your niece tickets to see her favorite band rather than giving or sending money.

 

No Fad Diets

Fad diets are fads for a reason, and they're all destined to go out of style when the next round of scientific research hits the presses. Healthy diets eliminate empty calories, embrace lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables, and don't require complex calculations. Deep down, you know the rules of healthy eating. Choose natural foods. Limit your calorie intake. Focus on balance over time. This season, ditch fad diets, which only make you feel worse about yourself and harm your health.

 

Love Yourself

The holiday season is a great time to remember how much you love your friends and family. But self-love is just as important. People with low self-esteem are more likely to make unhealthy eating and health choices, and the stress of low self-esteem can even cause you to pack on the pounds. Focus on cultivating an attitude of self-acceptance this season by naming five thins you love about yourself every day. Rather than reassuring yourself you'll have more self-love at some imaginary date when your body is “perfect,” remember that your life is now and your current happiness matters.