Do you love the holidays but you wish they weren’t so darn stressful, busy and likely to knock your health goals off course? Have you already succumbed to eating Halloween candy and are dreading packing on the pounds again this year? How would it feel if you woke up on January 1 proud that you maintained your priorities without being sucked into holiday overeating, stress, overwhelm and overload? It would feel great, wouldn’t it?Not only would it feel great, your heart will be a lot healthier too. Carrying around extra weight and feeling stress are two sure-fire ways to harm your heart. So take a look at my top five tips to ensure your holidays are enjoyable and stress free without overeating, packing on the pounds or harming your heart.Set your holiday intentions now: The first step you must take if you want to have a stress-free, fun-filled holiday season is to set your intentions for what you want your holidays to be like. Come up with a plan of action by reviewing what has and hasn’t gone well in the past. Next, consider what you will do differently this time around. How will you change so that you keep what’s good while getting rid of what’s bad about the holidays?Have a plan to free up time: If you don’t want your holidays to feel stressful, you must delegate, delay, diminish, or delete tasks. A great way to do this is to first make a list of all the tasks you are responsible for between now and January 1. Next, you should indicate which of these tasks you truly enjoy and which you do not like at all. For any tasks you dislike think of a way to have someone else do them (delegate), postpone them for another time like January (delay), do them part way but still good enough (diminish), or just don’t do them at all (delete). Now you have extra time to relax or do something you really enjoy.
Schedule “me” time: What re-charges you and makes you feel relaxed or pampered? Is it getting a massage? Watching your favorite holiday movie? Soaking in the tub with essential oils and candlelight? Whatever it is, literally schedule the “me” time into your calendar. Be sure to include several “me” time moments from now through December.Use the painter’s pallet approach to eating: Overeating is common during the holiday season. For many of us the food is what makes the holiday season special. The downside to this is weight gain. Many people gain on average between 1 and 4 pounds each holiday season, but they don’t lose that weight ever again. Year after year, the weight goes up. It is believed that most adult weight gain is due to holiday overeating.To help you eat less without feeling deprived, use the painter’s pallet approach to eating. This approach works very well when you are faced with an all you can eat buffet table for example. Taste a little bit of each thing on the buffet table so you don’t feel deprived. When you are done, decide which one thing you thought tasted the absolute best and go back to have a regular serving of that particular holiday food.Choose some healthy holiday desserts to enjoy: It is possible to make healthy holiday desserts that taste great but are good for you too. One of my favorite holiday desserts is apple crisp. I make it with apples, flax seeds, oats, raisins, cinnamon, heart-healthy oils and sweeteners. The sweetener I use (Z Sweet) is natural, has zero calories and doesn’t raise blood sugar at all. Below is the apple crisp recipe that I love. It was inspired by an apple crisp recipe in The New Laurel’s Kitchen cookbook by Laurel Robertson, Carol Flinders, and Brian Ruppenthal. This is a great cookbook by the way. Easy, healthy recipes that I think taste wonderful.Baked Apple CrispFilling
8 apples (Granny Smith or other baking apple)
Juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons whole wheat flour
3/4 cup raisins
1 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup ground flax seeds
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 cup Z-Sweet (erythritol + S. rebaudiana leaf extract)
1/4 cup canola or grapeseed oilDirections:
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Slice apples until you have enough to fill a 9″ x 13″ baking dish.
3. Mix apples in a bowl with lemon juice, cinnamon, flour, and raisins.
4. Put apple mixture in the baking dish
5. Add enough water to the baking dish to cover the bottom.
6. Mix all the ingredients for the topping in a bowl
7. Press topping on top of apples.
8. Bake for 30 minutes or until apples are soft.If you feel you need more support to help you get through the holidays without gaining weight or feeling overwhelmed, sign-up for my upcoming interview with Dr. Melissa McCreery a psychologist and life coach who specializes in emotional eating and helping women savor the holidays without overeating or stressing out. See details on how to register for this free call-in interview below. Upon registration, you will receive call-in details.
Do you want your holidays to be stress-free and fun without overeating and worrying about your waistline? Get some practical tips and advice when Sandra Hoedemaker the Heart-Healthy Food Coach interviews psychologist and holiday survival expert Melissa McCreery. For details and to register visit forms.aweber .com/form/00/1009287900.htm.