Tag Archives: holiday

Healthy Holiday

It’s that time of year again. Time to celebrate with our family and loved ones. Time reminiscing about the past, talking about the present and discussing our plans about the future. This is the season of giving and sharing, laughter and tears; joy and love, and seeing those you haven’t seen in a long time. It is also the season of weight gain.

Here, we will give tips on how to stay fit and healthy through the holiday season. Let’s start with food.

Holiday Eating Tips

• Bring food with you. If you are concerned about eating all the wrong things, you can take your food with you.

• Eat before you go. Before leaving the house or hotel, fill up on vegetables. Take vegetables, fruit and nuts to eat before the big meal. Filling up on healthy foods before the big meal, leaves less room for the unhealthy food you want to eat.

• Eat a little bit of everything. A lot of times we eat with our eyes or we think (unconsciously due to our upbringing) we must eat everything on our plate. To avoid over eating, place small amounts of food on a saucer to control your portion sizes.

• Eat more vegetables than anything else. Our plates should be filled with lots of vegetables and smaller portions of everything else. Eat all the vegetables first, again this leaves less room for other food we want to indulge in.

 

• Drink a lot of water. When we are full, there is less room for the foods we would indulge in.

• Eat slow. Eating fast allows us to take in too many calories. From the time we start eating, it takes 20 minutes for our brain to tell our body we are full. Slow down and you will become fuller sooner.

• Leftovers are a no, no. After eating, don’t go back for more food later. If you do, only eat veggies and protein (nothing fried). Don’t take leftovers home. If there are no leftovers to eat, it is easier to get back on track and keep the weight down. If you are the host, ask everyone to take as much food with them when they leave. If there is a lot of food left over, think about giving the food to a shelter.

These tips are not to prevent anyone from enjoying the foods they love, but eating them in moderation is key. We can eat our favorite food; we just have to eat them in smaller portions. The last option is to enjoy yourself and eat what you would like. Choosing this option means, one, we are not allowed to beat ourselves up the next day by telling ourselves, “I shouldn’t have eaten all that food”. One day isn’t going to get us off track as long as we don’t continue to eat the food (see #5). Second, don’t step on the scale the next day. The extra calories, sodium and sugar will cause weight gain

Holiday Fitness Tips

• Workout in the morning. There will be a lot of extra calories eaten during the holiday season. One way to help with weight gain (on Thanksgiving and Christmas days) is to workout in the morning or before leaving for the day. You want to burn more calories than you take in to control weight gain. According to WebMD.com, “…the average American consumes approximately 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat from eating a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. And that doesn’t include breakfast, lunch, or late-night snacking on leftovers. Studies show that the average American gains 1 to 2 pounds during the holiday season (Zelman, MPH, RD, LD, n.d.).” We may not burn 4,500 extra calories, but burning some calories is better than none at all.

• Walk after you get done eating. This is a great time for family and friends to go outside after eating, and go for a walk.

• We can take a workout with us. If we are visiting family and friends, go to YouTube and do a quick workout.

Staying fit and health during the holiday season is possible, if we are willing to make small changes.

Dreaming of a Debt Free Christmas

The holiday season can really become a burden for some families. Magnifymoney.com states, “between gifts, hosting parties, family emergencies, and for some, fewer work hours, it’s easy for debt to add up if you don’t have savings on hand. While the $986 of those surveyed added to their debt on average is a manageable amount, it can easily snowball (1).” In a time where building wealth and living a comfortable life is top priority in many households, the want to shower loved ones with expensive Christmas gifts does not fade. The Christian doctrine preaches that the “reason for the season” is to celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior through charitable works and goodwill toward mankind, but it’s just words, if no real action is practiced. Christians can make an impact on the war against debt by simply leading with our faith. Family leaders can create new traditions that will promote healthy financial decisions and deter common debt occurred during the holiday season.

model: Alyssa Banister photographer: Emajhn Johnson
model: Alyssa Banister
photographer: Emajhn Johnson

 

Start shopping early. Striving for a debt-free Christmas does not have to mean a ban on gifts. One of the common fails of creating debt is families struggling to come up with large sums of cash to get gifts. Millions of people prepare for the Christmas sales, when some of the same discounts are offered all year. Catch the Valentine’s specials or the special coupons for Mother’s Day and purchase a few Christmas gifts during that time. Spreading the costs over time will lighten the load on your finances and decrease the need to borrow or charge large amounts to credit cards. Slow and steady shopping will relieve the stress of impulse spending and may even create a more pleasurable and economical giving experience.

Give repurposed gifts. Repurposing has become a hidden treat amongst the craftier people of the world. With the help of Pinterest, Instagram and other social media, recycling has become cool again! The key to this new trend, is to take old items and change them to be used in a way other than its intended use. Here are a few examples to try.

Turn an old picture frame into an earring holder. A person that loves jewelry would appreciate a thoughtful gift such as this. You’ll need some sort of wire (picture wire works really well) to hang your earrings on. Just run the wire across the frame and then hang up your earrings. This is a great gift idea for girls of all ages and you can run as much wire, making as many levels, as you want. If you have longer earrings that dangle, make longer levels.

 

Instead of hauling that old entertainment center off to the dump, take a couple of hours and turn it into an adorable play kitchen for your little girl. The center doesn’t have to be in perfect condition as you can reinforce anything that needs it and it won’t really be expected to hold much weight, anyway. Just a little paint and imagination are really all you need to turn that old eyesore into something that any little girl will get hours of pleasure from. Plus, it’s a great place to store all those play cooking toys.

Pay it forward. Charitable acts usually peak during the holiday season, but there is always room for more community service. Start a tradition of some special charitable act that your family can enjoy together. Proverbs 19:17 states that “One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the LORD, And He will repay him for his good deed.” Following the example of this scripture emanates the very essence of the reason for the season. The name Christian or “Of Christ” compels us to be the Good Samaritan. Find a local soup kitchen or church that is serving the less fortunate for Christmas. Utilize this time to create fun memories and instill a desire to help those in need along with the family celebration.

The burden of debt eats at our destined happiness and creates the type of stress that is not easily shaken. Refuse or release the shackles of debt, by adjusting habits and traditions and relax into financial freedom. Once debt is eliminated from the picture, a white Christmas can once again invade our dreams!