The holidays are often a time of year when we can rationalize our way through multiple visits to the buffet table and bar at holiday parties and family get togethers. Instead of using food to “fill up” with bloating, fatigue and stress, try following some of these tips from Jerry Balice, Clinic Director at NEX Wellness, to “reduce” stress and inflammation while keeping your energy up for those long days!
How to make good food choices at holiday functions:
- Keep beverages to a minimum. If there are carbonated soda drinks and sweet alcohol/wines avoid those and have a glass of red wine. Limit consumption to one and drink water for the rest of the evening.
- Survey the buffet table before you fill your plate so you have an idea of food options that are healthier choices
- Keep portions small
- Start with green vegetables. If you must “dip”, choose hummus or avocado (Guacamole)
- Avoid deep-fried and puff pastry stuffed foods
- Choose only one high fat as a treat
- Fruits with cheddar cheese, olives
- Look for lean proteins such as chicken or fish
- Don’t fill up on breads which are high carbs
To manage stress and keep it in check, Balice recommends a protein rich breakfast every day, especially over the holidays. He also suggests eating small, frequent meals to maintain appropriate blood sugar levels, and don’t feed the stress with junk food. Magnesium rich foods such as almonds, spinach, cashews and halibut are good stress busters. To find out what nutritional supplements might be appropriate for you, Balice suggests a visit to your Naturopathic doctor to develop your personal plan.