Ten Tips to Maintain Good Habits in the New Year
By Becky Hanzen, Certified Health Coach Integrative Medicine at Avera
We made it through Christmas and New Year’s – hallelujah for that! That’s an accomplishment, especially if you were minding the way you approached food and diet, but we still need to stay focused. So let’s look at 10 tips to stay on track with better eating:
- When invited to parties and gatherings year around, plan ahead and eat before you go. Don’t assume there will be something there you can eat. You must by now know that it’s not safe out there. Be your own advocate and bring a healthy snack with you if you need to.
- Don’t hang out by the food. Out of sight is indeed out of mind.
- It is OK to let your friends know you can’t eat certain things. Many people have issues with certain foods. This is not a new thing for people. You don’t have to make yourself sick to “fit in”; be the person to show it can be done. You got this.
- Be mindful of why you are there – to socialize and enjoy the moment. Food shouldn’t take center stage over loved ones and friends.
- Drink plenty of water. Seriously – it keeps you more satisfied, gives you a feeling of fullness and if you are in the bathroom more – you’ll be away from the food (right?)
- Be mindful – every day – of what you are eating. If there is food to eat that you have deemed appropriate, then enjoy every bite. Chew your food well. Taste it. This gives your brain a chance to catch up with the fact you have eaten and you are less likely to overeat.
- Alcohol is rarely your friend and if you are on a special diet then for sure this is off limits. But why not enjoy a festive drink that is alcohol free and isn’t loaded with empty calories?
- Wear a small reminder of your commitment – a small, loose rubber band or a pin – any reminder to you of what you are doing and why. Maybe it’s a necklace from your child or even a small stone in your pocket to signify a lighter you and how that means a healthier you.
- Stay positive. You are choosing to be heathier. You can do whatever you want. Remember, it’s a blessing you’re giving to yourself and your loved ones.
- You can be the example – it can be done. I have done it, and I through most holidays and family get-togethers, I set the example. I’m not perfect, but I can show people how to do better with food. You can, too. We need examples to follow, whether that’s saying it’s OK not to overeat, or to eat healthy.
Live your life the way you want it to be. I want – no, demand – that my life be happy and healthy. So that’s what I work to create it. You can do the same all year long.