Fort Berthold Diabetes Program

“Holiday Wellness!”

By Amber Kirk-Lead Health Education Technician

It’s mid-December and the holiday season is upon us. We’re planning on spending time with loved ones whether it’s virtual or small family gatherings. Many of us are in the midst of holiday shopping online, in-stores, mailing cards and packages to loved ones. Most of all, holiday food is everywhere. From hot chocolate, cookies, candy canes, turkey, ham, and much more family traditional foods. With these seasonal treats and a side of stress, it causes us to mindlessly snack on less nutritious foods. 

Living in this pandemic is stressful and sometimes mentally, emotionally exhausting. Stress can make some of us tend to eat as a distraction, which can easily lead to holiday weight gain. Making these small changes can help you to a healthy holiday season. 

Holiday meals are often in large portions because of so many options to choose from. One way to help is to use the healthy plate method, which is filling half your plate with veggies and fruits. Giving ¼ of your plate to protein and leaving the rest for complex carbohydrates. Using a smaller plate helps with portion control. This way you can try everything and not break your calorie bank. Also keep in mind you can put in a workout before or after the holiday event.

Keep your home stocked with nutritious foods. The more healthy food options you have available the less likely you will choose the unhealthy foods. We tend to reach for foods on our counter tops that is readily available such as donuts or cookies. Try switching it up with air-popped popcorn, grapes, or pretzels. Drink more water to stay hydrated. Sometimes hunger is often confused with thirst. Limit sugary foods like candies, desserts and refined grains. Prioritize sleep to help reduce stress and recharge your brain. Combat holiday stress by taking care of yourself and find time to rejuvenate so you can enjoy the holidays. A full nights rest also helps the body with blood sugar levels.

Remember why you started, remind yourself to make healthy choices. The holiday season is a special time of the year but one meal won’t derail your progress or goals. We all have seasonal treats that we look forward to every year and there is nothing wrong with indulging a little. You can always get back on track and pick up where you left off. New Year’s resolutions are just around the corner. No excuses, let’s get moving. 

Stay active! It’s important to continue to be active, keeping heart healthy over the holidays. When there is snow fall, shoveling the snow is a great way to burn extra calories. Currently Fort Berthold Diabetes Program is hosting some awesome virtual classes from chair exercises, Zumba, circuit training from home, and strength training. These classes are free for everyone and you earn incentives just by participating. Classes are pre-recorded so you can do the class anytime. The next eight week class schedule will begin in January so stay tuned on what will be offered. If you have any questions please call our main office 701-627-7931. Thank you.