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Holiday diet tips to stay slim and trim

Lisa Armstrong is the mother of two grown daughters, a yoga practitioner, an educator and a long-time freelance writer who focuses on health, wellness, and historical topics that affect humanity's personal and collective well-being.

Beat the holiday bulge

Imagine coming out of the holidays without gaining weight and feeling better than before the season started. It's possible by keeping the following diet tips in mind to beat the holiday bulge.

Woman eating grapes

Holiday diet tips

1


Don't overeat at the holiday spread

Go for a small low-fat snack of fruit or cheese before the party or family get-together. You'll be less likely to sabotage yourself if you're not starving! Then when you're feasting on holiday eats, slow down and tune in to your hunger. When you're full, stop forking it in.

2Be weight-consciously realistic

Don't expect weight loss during the holidays, but certainly keep your waistline in mind when making food choices. Balance high-calorie holiday offerings with healthy and more frequent small meals. And don't forget to fit exercise into your busy holiday schedule.

3Stay hydrated

An Ayurvedic approach to holiday weight management and digestive health is to start your day with a cup of warm (not hot) water mixed with the juice of half of a lemon or with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. Each day drink at least two cups of tea that features ginger, peppermint (both stimulate digestion and metabolism), nettle (appetite suppressant) or clover tea. Be sure to aim for the recommended eight (8-ounce) glasses of water every day, too.

4Fill up on fiber

Fiber-rich foods will fill you up for relatively few calories as well as stabilize your blood sugar and keep your hunger at bay. Eat seasonal high-fiber vegetables, such as spinach, beans, carrots, pumpkin and cabbage. Try casseroles with brown rice, quinoa or buckwheat rather than white-flour pasta or white rice.

5Eat flavorfully

The tastier your food, the more satisfying it will be. Use seasonings such as coriander, fennel, rosemary, oregano and ginger, or fall-centric spices, like cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg. Skip the sugary cookies and cakes, and snack modestly on nuts, fruit and vegetables.

6Take the time to relax

Instead of letting stress drive you to overeat, breathe deep and relax. Take a walk (especially after meals), listen to music, power nap, and spend time with people you enjoy visiting. Above all, be as happy and thankful as you can be – the holiday season comes but once a year.

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