When it comes to holiday celebrations, everything typically revolves around food. Whether its family get-togethers, work parties or your amazing vendors who sent the triple tiered brownies, tempting treats are all around you.
Here are 4 simple tips to help you enjoy the holidays while feeling good about it!
Be mindful when you eat.
Most times when we eat, we are also enjoying another activity. Personally I love to read while I am eating lunch. Others watch TV or socialize with friends. Whatever we are doing we are rarely focusing just on our food. Try to really savor and mindfully taste the flavors while slowly and deliberately chewing each bite. You will be amazed at how much less food you consume when you pay attention and are aware of eating and not distracted by another activity. If you are with friends and have to engage, talk about how each flavor reminds you of someone you know....sweet, sour, or savory.
I love Christmas cookies....but I also love kale.
Find a good balance that incorporates the good for you foods and the not so good for you foods (i.e. 80/20 kale vs cookies). Don’t deprive yourself to the point of misery. The holidays are to enjoy but also be aware of proportions and fill up first on the good stuff. Our brain is finicky that way. The signals that register fullness to the brain do not happen until we get the nutrients we need. This means filling up on junk does not satisfy your brain’s attempt to acquire nutrients, so it sends out signals of “Hey, I’m still hungry” until it gets the healthy stuff. These cravings will continue until you fulfill the brain’s request. Hey this makes perfect sense, after all the brain’s just trying to keep your body alive and its odds are best with the right nutrients.
Practice the powerful art of visualization.
Visualize yourself eating the holiday cakes and dips, mentally tasting each bite. Go through the process of faux eating the things you want but should not have. Most likely, you know exactly how they taste, so do you really need confirmation...well maybe just a little. After a few minutes of this you can really trick your mind into losing its craving. Your mind cannot tell the difference between real and fake, all it can distinguish is your feelings. Think about the placebo effect to gain an understanding of how our minds can play tricks on us. And if you really need to have a little, refer to tip #2!
Think yourself healthy, every day!
Whether you think you are healthy or not, you are right. It’s really amazing how much power our thoughts and intentions have over our quality of life. They say we all create our own reality and that over time whatever beliefs we hold closest to us actually become our physical reality. Without getting into quantum physics (we’ll save that for another day), let’s just say that this happens to me all the time and I love it! So this holiday season, take the time to visualize and really feel your healthy vibrancy, joy and gratitude and I promise, it will come back to you in wonderful ways!