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How to Eat Healthy During the Holidays

healthy christmasEvery year, the holidays roll around and, with them, the temptation to over indulge in deliciously rich foods. Just because this is a time of celebration and festivity does not mean you have to engage in unhealthy eating. It may seem impossible to stay healthy in the midst of so many parties and gatherings with family and friends, but there are simple steps people can take to make sure the holidays do not derail their health.

The American Heart Association recommends that, when preparing a menu for your family or friends, to include certain things in your meal. These include:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Beans and legumes
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Fish, skinless poultry, or plant-based protein-rich alternatives

While they encourage an inclusion of healthy fats, saturated fats should be limited. Additionally, sodium, red meat, sweets and other high-sugar foods should be limited.

Even while consuming healthy foods, it is important to be conscious of portion control, caloric intake, and nutritional value. Nutrient and ingredient content may vary greatly between brands or preparation, especially if you are consuming pre-packaged foods. Comparing nutrition fact labels while shopping can help ensure that you choose the healthiest option. In fact, the American Heart Association also recommends that, if possible, it is best to prepare your own meals rather than consuming too many pre-prepared, pre-packaged foods. This will afford you more control over the ingredients.

Drinking during the holidays is another major feature throughout seasonal gatherings. Unfortunately, many of these choices are high in sugar, calories, and detrimental to maintaining a healthy diet. That does not mean you have to eliminate them entirely though. If you enjoy a glass of eggnog, for example, try filling your glass with half or three quarter parts of skim milk and one part eggnog. You will be able to reduce the calories while still enjoying the eggnog flavor. Skipping on the alcohol in any holiday drink will also significantly reduce your calories.

In addition to being conscious of your food intake, it is important to be physically active. Of course, physical activity is important during any time of the year, but some may perhaps not find it as easy to keep up with during the holidays. If you are in an area where it snows, enjoy a day of sledding, or visit an ice skating rink. Go out for a walk or a nice afternoon jog. There are ways to stay healthy and still enjoy this holiday season.

At Home Healthcare understands the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, no matter what season of the year it is.

Call us today to learn about our services and see what we can do for you and your family.

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Our compassionate team promotes health, healing and wholeness for our neighbors where it matters most – At Home.

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