Try these five simple ideas, courtesy of nutritionist Heidi Skolnik MS, CDN, for keeping nutrition goals steady and digestion healthy during the temptation-laden holidays.
Breakfast: No matter how busy the day, start off with a good breakfast! A well-balanced morning meal ideally includes a whole grain, like cereal, oatmeal or whole grain bread, 100 percent orange juice or fruit, and protein like eggs or cottage cheese or dairy such as milk or yogurt. Holiday scheduling can make the day unpredictable; getting in a healthy breakfast helps prevent overeating at office parties and holiday gatherings later in the day.
Snack: Plan on it. There is nothing that will sabotage your commitment to stay fit through the holiday season than going to a party hungry. The chances of you overeating go way up! Instead, bridge the hunger gap with a balanced afternoon snack, like almonds and apricots, yogurt, or an apple and an ounce of cheese. All are easy to keep at your desk or grab at home.
Move it: Don’t wait until New Year’s to commit to getting fit. Stay active through the holidays so you can start the year feeling good and on your game. Even if you skip a day here or there, try to remain true to your exercise regimen more days than not each week.
Hydrate: With scheduling so tight, it’s easy to forget to stay well-hydrated. Many of my clients complain water gets boring; remember all fluids count! In addition to water, treat yourself to a nice cup of hot chocolate made with low-fat milk for calcium, choose orange juice for a boost of vitamin C and energy to keep going, try a nice bowl of hot soup at lunch. Even coffee and tea count. Alcohol dehydrates, so holiday drinking does NOT count!
- Don’t forget protein: With all the sweet treats around, it's easy to overeat simple carbs. Remember to add protein such as poultry, fish, lean meats, eggs, cheese and soy to each meal to keep your immune system strong and help keep sweet cravings at bay.