by Ashley Galloway, MS, RD from The Fresh Beet
‘Tis the season for sweet treats, guilty pleasures and overindulging. That time of year when the presence of cookies are seemingly endless at the workplace and when it’s hard to put down that fork full of festive dinner even when you don’t think your stomach can hold it.
The holidays are a great time of year to share and enjoy all types of wonderful food. It’s also the time of year where it becomes easy to break those healthy eating habits you’ve worked so hard to maintain. However, by attempting to understand and practice a little “intuitive eating,” you can have your cake and eat it too.
Day 10: Intuitive Eating Over the Holidays
Eating intuitively is a concept through which you gain a healthy relationship with food, and you are able to separate your physical and emotional feelings when it comes to eating. Many of us mindlessly overindulge, whether it’s caused by emotions, our environment or just plain boredom. Using an intuitive approach will allow you to use your body’s inner wisdom to guide your hunger and satisfaction cues, helping you to better control those indulgence urges and to prevent overeating.
Give yourself a gift and try out these tips this holiday season!
Honor your Satiety. Attempt to become more in touch with how full you feel. After several bites, pause for a moment and notice how the food tastes. What’s your fullness factor? Stop when you’re comfortably full – not let the belt loose full. Nourishing yourself adequately, not excessively, is what your body wants and needs.
Don’t Skip Meals. Don’t make it a habit to skip breakfast or lunch because you know you’ll overeat at dinner. This pattern will surely mess with your metabolism, making it difficult to achieve and maintain your health and a healthy weight.
Appreciate. Tkae the time to appreciate the food before you, acknowledging its taste. Appreciate the opportunity you have to be sharing the food with others. Notice the environment you’re in, and be grateful. Using appreciation to slow down our meals can help us better our intuitive sides while eating.
All Things in Moderation. Understanding that it’s okay to indulge in chocolate every now and then eliminates guilt and won’t detrimentally affect your health and weight so long as you have an otherwise healthy eating pattern. Rather than snacking on 6-8 cookies in the office at once, understand that there will be another opportunity to taste something just as delicious again; there’s no need to overindulge at this moment – just take one or two cookies and savor the flavor. This is important with overating anything; we will have other opportunities to taste wonderful things. Save yourself the immediate discomfort and long term consequences of overeating.
Exercise. No need to run a marathon, but move around or do something active! The human body was designed to be in constant motion. Exercise induces better moods and clarity of mind so we can better practice the art of intuitive eating. I bet it also makes that slice of cherry pie taste just a little better too.
Want to learn how to successfully eat healthy this holiday? Read all the Healthy Holiday Challenge posts here.
Ashley Galloway MS, RD is the nutrition expert behind the fantastically named blog, The Fresh Beet. By sharing her expertise, Ashley is able to provide a fresh spin on the way we eat and give helpful advice when it comes to preparing healthy dishes in our kitchen.