How to eat healthy during the holidays: 5 Tips to control your cravings
It is easy to feel out of control when food is put on to the table during the holidays. You want to eat it all, but you also want to eat healthy so that you don’t regret your choices later. How do you stay on track when you are overwhelmed with food choices? Well, keep reading!
You are not alone. Don’t let your fears overtake your mind. Holidays should not be dreadful because of what you eat. You are not what you eat. You are a person with basic needs. You have the power to make food choices and not feel guilty about it.
Holidays are a time to enjoy time with family and that comes with food. Here are are tips you can apply so that you eat healthy during the holidays whether it is Thanksgiving or Christmas time or any time of celebration.
Here is how you can avoid a getting out of control in the presence of food and finally eat with confidence that you are doing what is right for your body.
1. Go in with healthy intentions
A goal without a plan lead to a fluster of choice. Before you sit at that dinner table, ask yourself what will make you feel better and satisfied after you eat it.
Don’t just focus on the action, focus on the plan. By overthinking whether to grab that white bread or not, in the presence of it, you are setting yourself up at a disadvantage. Make up pre-solution before you embark the journey.
Eat food that your body will thank for you later, not mock you later.
Don’t be strict with yourself or set unrealistic goals because you will end up giving up even before you start. Or worse, you will end up indulging more than you need to. By envision the outcome of your actions, you will most likely follow through.
2. Know your appetite
This is easier said than done. However, the only way to be smart about your choices during the holidays is to know what food you tend to overeat. You need to become aware of what food makes you feel slobby after you eat it. Whether it is sweets, salties or alcohol or else. Identify your weak point.
Here is what thing you should always keep in mind around food. Sweets will never satisfy you enough. It will make you want more and more until you crash. It takes so much energy to fight it after one bite. The constant thoughts circling in your head whether you are making the right decision as you eat it.
Self-control is one of the hardest qualities to have, but with time and persistence you will attain your goal.
Sugar takes your energy as you consume it. It takes your peace away after you’ve eaten it and you are right back to where you started because you couldn’t stop. Do you see a pattern here? If you know your downfall, know to avoid it. Do not let it entice you by eating it if you have a habit of eating indulging more than you need to. Remember, the goal here is to make choice that will make you proud after you have eaten it.
So ask yourself, would I still be proud of myself after I eat this or will I wallow with regret? Again, this is not to condemn yourself, but to foreshadow your state of being so that you can make the best decisions for your future self.
3. Shift your focus on what you can eat
Repulsing your cravings is what makes you even more drawn to it. It says in the Bible (Matthew 6:22-24, NIV), the eye is the lamp of the body. What you see is what you most likely reach for. What you do not see has no power over you. A lot of time, resisting the food you pay attention to ends up leaving you with no choice to make but to give in to it.
If you’re tempted by that white bread sitting gracefully on that table, put it out of your sight or shift your gaze at all the beautiful piece of food on the table you would rather enjoy.
So instead of focusing on what you shouldn’t eat, choose to see the benefit of the food that will fuel and satisfy you well enough that you won’t regret eating later. Keep reminding yourself of your goal to stay on track.
4. Say ‘no’ and simply stop there
If you do not want to eat that piece of chocolate, simply say ‘no’ kindly. Do not feel guilty about this. A lot of time, we are prone to justify ourselves and our actions and explain why we choose them. It’s almost as if the word ‘because’ is mandatory in our vocabulary while it is not. If someone offers or pass you a piece of food you do not want, tell it like it is.
Do not pretend to take one small piece to not disappoint them because you might end up disappointing yourself.
Say no and move on. Don’t try to compromise your standard because you feel bad as if you’re letting the person down. This is your goal and no one is going to do it for you. No one will bear consequences if you don’t follow through your actions in order to eat healthy.
5. Have a community to stay accountable
You are the people you surround yourself with. Before I had people around me who supported me in my fitness journey, I would always go back to my poor eating habits. I would make excuses for myself and justify why I went back to my poor routines. Just being by myself wasn’t enough because no one was holding me accountable for my actions.
Research shows that you are more inclined to build better habits when people around you have the same goals as you.
Have friends that would do this with you. If you’d like a cheerleading sheering you in your fitness journey, subscribe to my newsletter to get the ongoing support you need where I offer extra tips beyond of this blog.
Remember, this is not a one-day thing. Self-control is one of the hardest qualities to have, but I know that these tips will help you eat smart during the holidays without having to derail your progress.
You have to know yourself. Know what makes you fall and what makes you stumble. It is only by identifying these weaknesses and following these steps that you will truly see a change in your habits as you even practice way beyond holiday season.
If this helped you, feel free to share this with family and friends that would benefit from these tips this season. Leave your thoughts in the comments below.