Q&A w/Stephanie Solaris: Celebrating the Holidays

Q: How can I approach the holiday season nutritiously?

As the snowflakes start to ‘blow in’ this winter season it’s common for the focus on your health and waist line to ‘blow out’!   The distractions are endless…holiday parties, bake sales, shopping, decorating, family gatherings and there is always the ‘plate of sweets’ that lands at your home or office.   It even happens here at Solaris!

The festivities and warmth of celebrating can be nourishing and exhausting at the same time. Here are 3 keys to making great choices so you will enjoy your holiday festivities and not  ‘blame’ the holidays come January.

1- Choose Happiness:  Be as picky with your food as you are with your holiday commitments. You may think that choosing to EAT everything and DO everything will make you happier.  It will surely make you be bigger AND tired!  Who wants that?

This season be picky with what you do, with whom, and when, while keeping the love of yourself in mind first.   Take a cue from mother nature. The winter solstice is upon us.  It marks a time when there is more darkness than light in the day.  This is nature’s way of signaling us to slow down; naturally giving us time to take stock in who we are, what we really want, what we’ve done and who we want to become.   Saying, “I’ll pass on this appetizer or on this event ” or “I’d love to do xyz” takes courage. You’ll find you’ll be more than satisfied and fulfilled when you choose the ‘crème de la crème’ this holiday season.

2- Choose Wisely: Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. It’s easy to look at the big picture and say “I’ll be good” this holiday but that doesn’t come in handy when you’re faced with a fresh plate of brownies next to the coffee machine at 3pm.  Food is not a moral issue-it’s energy to feed your body.

Many of you have worked hard all year on your health, waistline and wellbeing.  Take this time to rejoice. Connect with those you love instead of connecting impulsively with food . When faced with the brownie plate, ask yourself if this is an ’impulse purchase’ or a wise decision.   Remember how you want to feel at the next get together and promise yourself ‘true planned indulgence’ at the next party or the next dinner out on the town.  You’ll find that when you choose to commit to good things for yourself, the reward you’ll get will be worth more than the temporary satisfaction you’ll receive from a sugary treat.

3- Choose Warmth:  Creating your own comfort fends off loneliness. The holiday season can be emotional-remembering loved ones, near, far or departed.  A new study showed that keeping warm fends off loneliness!  So keep warm naturally by raising your heart rate this holiday and moving! The heat your own body generates will not only keep you warm for hours, but burn off that holiday dinner from the night before.

Instead of letting the ‘outside’ wind blow you every which way this season, listen to mother nature.  Slow down, make a conscious decision to connect with your food and those around you. You’ll create a holiday to remember in more ways than one.

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