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Eating Healthy Even Through the Holidays

The holidays will soon be upon us, and that can wreak havoc on our diet and eating habits! Have you ever decided to eat healthier —“This year is going to be different”? A typical scenario might look something like this: You know you need to watch your diet and weight. You choose a super-strict regimen which then takes all the pleasure out of eating. This forces you to avoid social opportunities because you know you’ll blow it. How well does that work? Probably not very well.

“Weight management really should be about focusing on eating healthy foods that you like, rather than trying to stay away from foods that you like,” says Katie Rickel, PhD, a clinical psychologist and weight-loss expert in Durham, North Carolina. A diet that will work must contain both foods that are healthy for us and foods that we enjoy eating.  The secret is knowing when you can indulge, and when it is time to stop.1

Steps to Help You Eat Healthier

  1. Rather than choosing a rigid diet that is focusing on the foods you cannot eat, instead focus on the foods that you will According to Vanessa Patrick, PhD (University of Houston), “’I can’t’ signals deprivation, which makes you more likely to cave, whereas ‘I don’t’ signals determination and empowerment, making your refusal more effective.”
  2. You need guidelines, but allow flexibility within those guidelines. Don’t be too specific, as in “I’m going to eat 3 oz. of Brussels sprouts every night.” Instead think of what those foods have—antioxidants, vitamins, etc. What else also has those same nutrients that your body needs?
  3. Only eat at meal times or at planned snack times.
  4. Forgive yourself when you slip.
  5. If your foods of choice are not available, find the closest substitute that will fill you up–and enjoy the meal.

This all boils down to the fact that what we think about our food may be just as important to weight loss as what we actually eat in the long run. Have you found ideas that help you in your weight loss journey that will help you to eat healthier? We’d love for you to share them with us!


See also:

1 The idea of eating healthy without obsessing over it comes from the ­ book 20 Pounds Younger by Michele Promaulayko with Laura Tedesco, Rodale, 2015.


*The information in this article is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition and does not substitute for a thorough evaluation by a medical professional.  Please consult your chiropractor or physician to determine whether these self-care tips are appropriate for you.

Take the 1% Challenge

A few years ago Tom Connellan wrote a book that became a best seller. Its title is The 1% Solution for Work and Life. In the book the author challenges the reader to make just a 1% change for the better in each area of life. It isn’t difficult, and over time 1% plus 1% plus 1%… adds up to a significant change. It’s a great challenge for us to become better than we have been in any area of life.

Read More

10 Tips to Eating Healthy on a Budget

Good food doesn’t have to break the budget

Trying to eat well without breaking the budget can be difficult these days. For the health-conscious shopper at the grocery store, the four most costly items tend to be meat, organically-grown foods, pre-cut produce, and pre-prepared foods. Of course, limiting some of these foods may help the budget, but there are a few more things you can do and still feed yourself and your family well.

1. Buy the store brands. They tend to be less expensive than the national brand names.
2. Look for the produce that is in season and plan your menu around those items.
3. Some foods tend to absorb a higher amount of pesticides than others, so spending money on organically-grown foods on those is a wise buy, but for other produce the organic version may not be as necessary. Check out for a list of the produce that is highest/lowest in pesticide residue.
4. Only plan meals for 4-5 nights per week. Clean the leftovers out of the refrigerator for the next couple days’ meals. Not only do you have a cleaner fridge, but you also benefit from eating that food rather than throwing it (and your grocery dollars) in the garbage.
5. Rather than having meat as your main dish every day, plan on using it as a side dish some days. Or eat some meatless meals. If going meatless is new to you, the internet has many great sites for some fresh ideas to help you get started.
6. Buy in bulk when foods are offered in bulk.
7. Note the amount you are spending on beverages. Exchange some fancy drinks for a healthful glass of water!
8. Compare prices per unit. A larger package is often less per unit than a smaller one.
9. Watch for sales at your local grocery store and stock up when prices are lower.
10. Make your own food. It is almost always less costly to make it yourself than to buy it pre-packaged. Make it a family affair—get some good family time in while you are preparing those dishes together and enjoy the process!

Give these ideas a try for one month and see how much it helps. Let us know how you do!