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Top 5 Mindful Healthy Holiday Eating Tips

Tis’ the season for relaxing and spending time with friends and family. Unfortunately, it is also a time when you can feel stressed, tired, bloated, and sick. At Essential Balance, we feel that there is a way to enjoy the holidays without sacrificing your health. So, our gift to you, is a holiday health survival guide.

Here are top 5 healthy holiday eating tips to be mindful of when enjoying the festivities:

Tip 1: Kick the Guilt

With all the festive gatherings, sticking to a diet over the holidays can be tough. There is less time to prepare food and a lot more temptation.  Worrying about staying on a 100% perfect diet will only lead to guilt and stress. Stress hormones can lead to weight gain, interrupt sleep and lower your immune system. Stress can also make a holiday less enjoyable and this should be a happy time. So, go ahead and indulge a little bit. It’s about finding a balance.

Tip 2: Know your limit

Are you the mom trying to do everything for everyone over the holidays? Or are you the office worker trying to juggle year end number crunching with all the holiday parties? Or perhaps you’re both. We all push ourselves over the holidays – which is why it is imperative not to push our bodies too far by over-eating.

Not feeling guilty about indulging is not the same as having a free for all. Eating too many decadent foods can cause digestive disturbances, lower immunity and lead to weight gain. There will always be that host or hostess who insists on refilling your drink, or that family member who encourages you to have a second helping of dessert. Resist the pressure and don’t be afraid to push back. Bring a healthy meal to your next holiday get together!

Tip 3: Cleanse

The best gift you can give your body is cleansing foods which will help it cope with any added foods or stress throughout the holidays. Here is what you can do.

  • Drink water with lemon: Stimulates bile flow and cleanses the liver.
  • Eat dark leafy greens: Highly nutritious and will help to rebalance and re-alkalize the body.
  • Eat Fiber: Keeping a regular schedule throughout the holidays can be difficult, but at least you can keep your bowels regular. Apples, apricots, chia seeds, flax seeds and psyllium are all fiber-rich foods.

Tip 4: Reduce these As Much as Possible

Here is our naughty list of holiday foods and some ways to avoid them

  1. Sugar: Excess refined sugar can cause stress and inflammation in the body. Avoid refined sugars by making delicious holiday treats using natural sweeteners, such as coconut palm sugar and brown rice syrup.
  2. Alcohol: A toxin in the body that interferes with oxygen intake, liver function and digestion. When at a holiday party, limit alcohol as much as you can. Alternate your drinks with water and lemon.
  3. Caffeine: Consumption of caffeinated beverages increase stress hormones and interferes with sleep. Holidays are a time for rest, so skip the caffeinated beverages no matter how festive the cups look.
  4. Carbonated Beverages:A carbonated beverage may seem like a good alternative to alcohol, but carbonation is also a toxin that should be avoided whenever possible. Try cranberry juice with a lime wedge.

Tip 5: New Year Reset

January is a time for New Year’s resolutions, so it is also a good time to cleanse and detoxify our body. Starting the year off right with a detox can be a good way to get back on track after the holidays. It also gives the digestive system a break. Detoxification is a natural process that occurs in the body, but sometimes this process needs a little help.

For help surviving the holidays and cleansing after the New Year, contact Essential Balance for our Before and After holiday special. Come in for an appointment prior to December 15th and receive your follow up session after January 1st for half price. Give us a call at 416-885-5558 or contact us.


Eileen Fauster is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Registered Acupuncturist and the founder of Essential Balance Holistic Health serving the GTA, Toronto, Vaughan, Yorkville, Woodbridge and neighbouring areasKirsten Colella is a Holistic Nutritionist. Both have helped many clients develop better eating habits, get healthier and lose weight, even during the holidays.

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