So there’s about 1 month left until all holiday-baking hell breaks loose and cookies/chocolates/candy will make up 90% of my diet. For the last half of November and beginning half December, I’m going to try to do a couple things every day to stay on the healthy train and enter the holiday snacktacular season feeling a bit more in control of what I eat.
(my usual holiday mentality)
Also, since we’re leading into exam time for those in school and holiday shift overload for those at work, people are getting less sleep and are more susceptible to the flu! Sometimes lack of sleep is hard to avoid, but by eating a little more healthy I’m hoping to arm myself against getting sick during exams and the break.
I’ve been brainstorming some ideas about what I can do that won’t require a massive fridge overhaul or extreme amounts of time in the kitchen. I’m hoping that because each of these things can be easily integrated into my day so that they will become routine and stick around during holiday food fests.
1. Water! Everyone knows the 8 glasses a day recommendation…I just have a hard time sticking to it! Typically, I’ll go on a week long kick (usually spurred on by a new water bottle) and then forget about it. To help me try to remember to drink enough water I’m going to do three things: i) drink a glass of water every time I eat (3 meals + 2 snacks is at least 5 glasses). ii) have a big glass of water right before bed (I usually take a few sips when I take my vitamins, it should be easy to just have the entire glass. If you take pills at a different time of the day, substitute the night glass for whenever works well). iii) scout out the good water fountains at school so I can refill easily (for those people at work, check to see if you have a water cooler!).
2. A new study found that some people who begin to add more vegetables and fruits into their diets actually gain weight in the first few months because they rationalize eating more junk food with the increase of healthy food (when I find the source, I’ll link to it). I’m definitely guilty of this. I’ll feel snacky so I’ll eat an apple and when that doesn’t satisfy my sweet/salty/fatty craving, I’ll have chocolate and not think twice. In terms of caloric intake, it would have actually been better to just have the chocolate. So what’s the solution to this? I think I’m going to try to implement a one-unhealthy-snack-a-day policy. Until December 15th, I’ll get one tasty treat a day so I don’t feel like I’m missing out. Some people do the ‘weekend warrior’ version of this where they don’t eat any sweets or unhealthy snacks Monday to Friday but then let themselves eat whatever they want on the weekend. I don’t think I could go 5 days without chocolate, especially during exam times so I’ll try this method first. Things I have to watch out for: specialty hot chocos from Starbucks with whipped cream count as 1 snack, although counting calories never gets me anywhere I’m going to try to keep each snack below 200 calories, snacks are cumulative so if I skip a snack one day I can eat two the next! (arbitrary rule implemented by me)
3. Green tea! 1 cup a day! Antioxidants and all the great stuff are in green tea. Although most studies show positive health effects when 4-10 cups are consumed/day, this is not realistic for my schedule. Hopefully drinking 1 cup consistently will provide some benefits, and if not it is another glass of water to add to my daily total.
4. No eating while watching TV or playing on internet. I typically eat dinner while watching TV (woohoo living by yourself) and I’ve read that doing this makes you less aware of how full you are.
5. Try one new fruit or vegetable a week. I’m at the grocery store at least once a week so this shouldn’t be hard. Maybe I’ll find a new favourite! I’ll post back every Tuesday my new food!! (No juicing…)
The point of this 1 month challenge is not to lose any significant weight but to help me pay better attention to what I’m putting in my body which I think will help with holiday binge-eating!
(Kitty that is happy during the holidays)
Does anyone else have some healthy habits I should add to my list? Anyone want to join the healthy train so we can complain to each other about how much we’re peeing?