Hungry For The Holidays


by Jordan Humphries, CPT, Fitness Nutritionalist

5 Tips for Your Holiday Feasting


It’s that time of the year again! The trees have changed colors, and the days are much shorter. The weather has gone from humid, scorching afternoons to cold,chilly evenings. What brings change in nature also brings change in people. And that one change is, FOOD! From our favorite grill time moments to family traditions during the holiday months, we all have our favorite foods to throw down on when it’s cold out. I’ll short list 5 things you should do to still enjoy the holiday foods you love without compromising your belt loops:

  1. PORTIONS! PORTIONS! PORTIONS! – One of the worst things we all do during this time of the year is indulge in more than we can handle. I call it, “Looking for lost hope syndrome.” The best thing anyone can do to attract the least amount of bulge is keep portions sizable for JUST YOU. Stop adding more than you’re ready for. Read the serving sizes placed on the back or side of packaging of your favorite snacks.Use the “balled-up fist” method to get an idea of what a portion of food should look like on your plate. Fist is equal to 1 cup (depending on hand size), palm for 3 oz of meat or a tennis ball for a serving of fruit. And of course, use of a smaller plate
  2. SIT THIS ROUND OUT – Aw yes, Round 2. The point of no return for some and a game of, “Is this too much or is it not enough”, for braver souls. We think second helpings of grandma’s homemade buttered biscuits and country style gravy is worth a second go around huh? Well hold yourselves the wide eyes and lack of sudden movements. Stacking up that double helping only leads to prolonged success of losing those needed inches for your spring time island getaway. Make it easy on yourself, live to fight another day and save room for a calorie friendly dessert
  3. CONQUER YOUR SWEET TOOTH – So many sweets, so little stomach room. Now your looking for the best baked goods in the house but don’t know which one to eat. The idea of eating a slice of everything pops in to your mind, but at the risk of a hefty sugar crash, you smartly say, no.Well here’s what to do: Choose a go to dessert and cherish it like you’ve never cherished it before. Enjoying what we eat and tasting it for what it is keeps us from bombarding our faces at a Mach 5 rate. Lack of sugary consumption means less chances for that 4 o clock nap on Christmas day.
  4. NO SNOOZE, YOU STILL LOSE – A recent study done on sleep patterns in the Southeastern US and the Appalachian Mountains area shows the highest concentration for short sleep prevalence.Short sleep can be defined as anything under <7 hours of rest in a 24-hour time period. Can you imagine that 39% of people in the state alone sleeps just under7 hours? The lack of rest as you know can contribute to health problems and weight gain. There’s a 4.4% chance to be more obese from lack of rest than someone well rested with the same problem. Or the fact that 14.1% of people tend to smoke more than their smoking companions who get to bed at a reasonable time. It’s true we only hurt ourselves when we binge watch every episode of Black Mirror or (insert your favorite Netflix series). Let’s help ourselves to recharge by sleeping at set times, exercising and setting a pre-bedtime habit
  5. ACTIVE APPETITE – We all love sitting with the family, enjoying the tv watching our favorite holiday movies. Nobody thinks of getting out to do anything other than house hop to the next persons shindig full of more tasty goodness. But too much sitting can give even the most attentive person the it is one has yet to witness. So, to keep those sheep down for longer and those legs from a sleepy somber, a physical activity with the family should be on one’s agenda. Depending on your place of visit or your areas weather, outdoor activities such as walking in the park/neighborhood ring true for anybody feeling the dressing creep on them. A breezy bike ride or a holiday racing event should get the blood pumping back to normal, leaving you more energetic for the day’s errands.

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