Start a holiday tradition of good health

Remember yourself this holiday season by maintaining a healthy lifestyle during this busy time of year.

During the busy holiday season, it is easy to steer away from routines and normal eating patterns. Work parties, children’s holiday performances and extra chores cause stress and can take time away from your everyday schedule. Meals become less healthy and more convenient, fast substitutions take place of a home cooked meal, while exercising takes a back burner to the additional duties each day. This year, adopt new traditions for your family. Create holiday traditions that focus on relieving the season’s stress which will help to keep you healthy.

  • Continue to exercise during the holidays. According to the Harvard Medical School, exercise reduces stress hormones while also stimulates the production of mood elevators. It also increases your energy level. Being in a better mood and having more energy makes it easier to manage the stress during the busy routines of the holidays.
  • Make healthy food choices including plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat protein and dairy choices. Use MyPlate for suggestions on making healthy choices and menu plans. Michigan State University Extension recommends making half your plate fruits and vegetables. The added fruits and vegetables will help you feel more satisfied, which can help you to consume less calories. Choosing lean meats, beans and dairy are healthy selections to help you maintain your weight during the holidays.
  • Use portion control when indulging in foods that are higher in calories and fat, which are likely to be served at holiday parties. Fill up on fruits and vegetables before leaving home, which will help limit your consumption of foods that are higher in sugar and fat at the party.
  • Get plenty of rest. Make sleep a priority by aiming to get the needed seven to eight hours a day, as recommended by the Center for Disease Control. Getting the proper amount of sleep will help you to have increased energy and improve your mood.

This holiday season create a new holiday tradition that gives the gift of good health! Prioritize healthy eating, sleep and exercise this holiday season. This will give you a stress-free season to create wonderful, memories with family and friends.

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