12 Healthy Living Tips to Get You Through the Holidays

12 Healthy Living Tips to Get You Through the Holidays

Dec 14 2015

This holiday season, give yourself the gift of health and wellness.

December is a busy month filled with festive fun and decadent dinners. It can be difficult to keep health and wellness top of mind with events each weekend and extra items on our to-do list. In addition to the magic of the season, many experience weight gain and additional stressors.

Here’s a few tips to help you stay healthy, both physically and mentally, this holiday season:

  1. Eat breakfast every morning – Breakfast during the holidays is sometimes an afterthought since time is tight with so much happening. However, a healthy breakfast wakes up your metabolism, increases mental alertness, improves mood and helps manage your weight.
  2. Beware of liquid calories – Did you know your favorite holiday drink may contain as many calories as a Big Mac? For example, a 16 ounce Peppermint Mocha contains 470 calories and 10 grams of saturated fat. For a healthier version, opt for a 12 ounce Peppermint Mocha with nonfat milk and no whipped cream. That will bring down the calorie count to 240 calories and only 1 gram of saturated fat.
  3. Manage stress Stress is often heightened during the holidays and it can be harmful to your health. To reduce the stress, remember to be realistic, plan ahead, ask for support and learn to say no. It is important to learn how to prioritize what you need to do and want to do during this month.
  4. Get a good night’s sleep – Lack of sleep can make you overeat, leave you feeling sluggish, affect your mood and increase your risk of getting sick. Aim for six to nine hours a night in order to be well-rested enough to enjoy the extra fun and activities the holidays bring.
    Priority Health Personal wellness Get some sleep Holiday tidings
  5. Make time for exercise – It’s easy to want to skip your workout when things get busy during this time of year, but try to fit in at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise each week. You’ll have more energy and be happier, thanks to the endorphins, and healthier this holiday season.
  6. Relax and rejuvenate – The holiday season is about giving, but it is also a great time to give to yourself. Schedule some R&R time – book a massage, take a bubble bath, read a book, do yoga. If you are short on time, ask if your loved ones could step in and help out so you can have a chance to unwind.
  7. Enjoy winter activities – Don’t hibernate. Bundle up and enjoy this time of year, while burning calories at the same time. Go sledding or ice skating, build a snowman or have a snowball fight. Better yet, take a walk with the entire family downtown to enjoy the holiday lights and decorations.
    Priority Health Personal wellness Enjoy winter activities Healthy tidings
  8. Stay hydrated – With all the running around you may be doing, don’t forget to drink up to replenish your system. On average you need to drink half of your body weight in ounces of water. Carry a water bottle with you everywhere you go as a reminder to stay hydrated.
  9. Eat your fruits and veggies – Fruits and veggies are nutrient-rich, superfoods packed with energy, fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Aim for at least five servings a day to improve your health and manage your weight. Include a fruit or veggie at each meal and snack to reach this goal. And, no, holiday fruit cake does not count as a serving!
    Priority Health Personal wellness Fruits and veggies Healthy tidings
  10. Spend wisely – The holidays can be financially frustrating so make sure you create a budget and stick to it. Be creative with your gift giving and at the end of the day, remember what’s really important this holiday season (hint: it’s not money).
  11. Eat mindfully – Listen to you body and eat when you’re truly hungry rather than when you’re bored, stressed, or simply because the food is there. Also, stop eating when you’re satisfied instead of full or stuffed. This can feel difficult at holiday parties when food is so centric to the experience. Focus on spending time with the people at the event instead.
  12. Set smart goals – With the new year right around the corner, setting goals could help you stay focused, motivated and accountable. SMART goals are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-based. Set small daily and weekly goals toward your ultimate goal. This will build the foundation for a lifestyle change rather than a quick fix.

Want more healthy holiday tidings? Right now we’re posting one new tiding a day until Dec. 25 on the Priority Health Facebook page. Check them out here.