Tips for Getting Back on Track After Holiday EatingJanuary 6, 2023
Tips for Getting Back on Track After Holiday Eating
Healthy eating is stressed to us at all ages, but it is especially important for older adults. A quality diet, like the Mediterranean diet, has been shown to sharpen your mind, reduce the risk of conditions like heart disease, and boost your overall mood. It’s important you eat flavorful, healthy meals for your full-body wellness.
No matter how good your eating habits are, chances are that your diet changes during the holiday season. We’re surrounded by delicious fatty foods and sweets, and while they are delicious, it’s all too easy to take it a little too far. Try these tips for getting back on track after holiday eating to return to a healthier lifestyle. Remember: before starting any new diet or exercise plan, consult with your doctor.
Don’t be too hard on yourself
After a month of enjoying sweets and treats, it’s easy to feel like you need to be hard on yourself to “get back to normal,” but this mindset isn’t healthy. Instead, be happy that you enjoyed your favorite foods, and look forward to achieving a healthier lifestyle in the weeks to come.
It’s also important that you don’t instantly resort to extremes. Significantly cutting down on your caloric intake or partaking in extreme exercise can lead to problems like fatigue, hunger, and increased cravings. Instead, change your diet and exercise your habits incrementally, not suddenly.
Use positive reinforcement instead of negative
Unfortunately, meeting one’s healthy eating and exercise goals isn’t a lateral achievement. Punishing yourself for not meeting said goals isn’t the way to go about it, however. Instead, reward yourself for the goals you do meet. This will help encourage you to move forward as opposed to scaring you for not doing well enough.
Don’t quit cold turkey
Oftentimes, when one decides it’s time to make a healthier change to their diet, they may decide to cut out excess sugar completely. The problem with quitting sugar cold turkey, however, is that it is addictive, and you may experience withdrawals. This could lead you to experience intense cravings and fall off the proverbial wagon. So, instead of removing it completely, slowly cut back on it week by week.
Drink enough water
It is already fairly common for most adults to not drink enough water. Between hot chocolate, cider, and other seasonal drinks, that problem is exacerbated during the holiday season. Make sure you start the year right by drinking enough water—about eight cups a day. Water is crucial to every part of our health, including skin, joint, and digestive health.
Get in 30 minutes of exercise a day
Especially in the winter, seniors don’t get enough exercise. Try to combat that problem by setting aside 30 minutes a day for exercise. This could mean a 30-minute walk around the neighborhood or following a yoga video at home. The activity will be good for both your physical and mental health, as exercise has been shown to boost dopamine and serotonin.
Start the new year right with the help of a caregiver
For some seniors, getting back on track after holiday eating is a little more challenging. Making a trip to the store for groceries isn’t as easy as it once was, and cooking healthy meals can be an exhausting endeavor.
If this seems familiar, know you’re not alone—and an at-home caregiver can help. For 30 years, the staff at Home Care Powered by AUAF has offered seniors the support they need to lead healthy, happy lives. We gladly aid with any activities of daily living they require, including meal preparation, running errands, and personal care.
For more information on how we can help, call us at 773-274-9262. We look forward to speaking with you further.
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