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Tips for healthy & mindful eating over the holidays!

We have compiled a list our our top tips to help you feel your very best throughout the holiday season! Forget about that “all or nothing” approach to nutrition and rather work towards having balance and being mindful with your food intake over the holidays. 

1) Aim to follow the below plate portions when creating nutritious meals:

  • ½ a plate of non-starchy vegetables, salad
  • ¼ plate of lean protein (e.g. turkey, ham, chicken or seafood).
  • ¼ plate of low GI carbohydrates, starchy veg or fruit (e.g. roasted potato, pasta salad, quinoa or couscous salad, wholegrain bread or legumes).

2) Whatever you do, don’t skip meals!

  • Regular eating is the 1st step to prevent cravings & overeating. Eating a healthy breakfast is a non-negotiable at Perform Dietetics! Breakfast doesn’t need to be the moment you wake up (although it certainly can be), however, don’t purposely skip it hoping to save calories later in the day, as you will likely make up for it or even exceed it at your later meals…

3) Moderate alcohol

  • Alcohol also contains ENERGY! The lower the alcohol %, the better! Otherwise you can dilute wine/spirits with ice, soda water & diet soft drinks or choose low calorie alcoholic beverages (i.e. Seltzers, low carb beer/wine etc.). Drink water between alcoholic drinks & use natural flavouring in drinks – such as mint, lime/lemon, strawberries, or blueberries!

4) Keep it in perspective

  • A few days of eating & drinking will make very LITTLE difference to your health & weight in the long run. Our health is made up of more than just our diet. This includes spending time with loved ones & enjoying Christmas for all it is!

5) Honour your hunger cues

  • Before eating, rate your hunger on a scale of 1-10 (0=starving, 10=stuffed). Aim to stop eating when you’re just full, rather than overfull (~6-8 on the hunger scale).

6) Prioritise physical activity & sleep

  • Plan plenty of holiday activities such as:
    • Bike riding
    • Playing cricket
    • Playing Tennis
    • Hiking
    • Surfing etc.
  • Also, try to prioritise 8 hours sleep per night to keep you feeling your very best at this busy time of year!

7) Eat slowly & mindfully

  • The holiday season is a time for enjoyment! Be present when eating by paying attention to the colour, smell, texture, flavour & temperature of the food. Remove distractions when eating (i.e. TV, phone, laptop) & put your cutlery down between each bite to slow you down!

8) Let go of the “all or nothing” mentality!

  • The silly season is no excuse to overindulge for 2-3 weeks straight just because the New Year is fast approaching & you promise yourself that “this will be the year to get fitter & lose weight”. This all or nothing thinking encourages overindulgence, before the deprivation begins… Instead, focus on embracing moderation, allowing a few indulgences (ones that you really want & will enjoy!), then when Christmas is over go back to your usual diet & exercise routine!

From the team at Perform Dietetics, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and an even happier New Year! Thank you for your incredible support and bring on 2022!

Steph & Lyss xx

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