Healthy Holiday Survival

New Year dinner

By Christine Silvestri

Is it possible to enjoy holiday treats without derailing your health and fitness goals? The answer is YES! If you do it mindfully.

Before you think that I am going to tell you to make a batch of beet cookies, I am going to tell you that I think you should eat the cookie (cake, muffin, pastry…insert favorite here) you really want. The one that you baked with grandma when you were a child and the recipe has been passed for generations. The one with real butter, chocolate chips and white flour (unless you are medically advised not too of course)!  Why? Because it’s best to keep it real, and no one feels good when they deprive themselves and put negative thoughts on food.

So how do we enjoy those holiday treats without going overboard? It all comes down to choices.  Every time you choose to eat one thing over the other, you are choosing what is important to you right now. Often, we don’t even realize what we are choosing in our rush-rush world when we reach for the less than healthy options. It’s automatic. But if we make our choices mindfully, we will enjoy our choices much more. Sometimes certain things should win out over nutrition. Such as connecting with our roots, spending time with our loved ones, creating memories with our children or remembering our own childhoods and how wonderful the festivities tasted.

My suggestion, eat the treats of choice. But don’t scarf them down without intent and feel guilty. Eat them slowly. Savor them. Observe where you are and with whom. If you are alone, sit down with a plate and a warm drink and take each bite slowly to make it last. Enjoy it, and move on. No guilt, think of the pleasure those treats used to bring you and remember who you were with when you enjoyed them last.  Chances are when you do it this way, you not only will enjoy the treat more, you will eat less of it.

And that is how you survive the holidays healthfully. Staying present in the season, feeling good about your choices, not beating yourselves up and moving on!

Christine Silvestri is the Health and Fitness contributor to Upton Daily. Christine is a NASM-Certified Personal Trainer, Youth Exercise Specialist and MMA Conditioning Specialist. She is also certified in Boxing Fitness, Tabata Bootcamp, and is a Certifed Nutrition Coach through Precision Nutrition (Pn1).

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