Mindful Eating Tips for the Holidays

It’s that time of year. Networking cocktail parties, work holiday parties, family feasts, potlucks with friends. Translation: food food food gatherings (& likely a few adult beverages)! It’s a time of year when over-eating & mindless eating run rampant. Many of our health goals & healthy lifestyles are put by the wayside. This isn’t to say that you can’t enjoy a decadent chocolate dessert or grandma’s famous shortbread cookies or your best friend’s chewy gingerbread cookies.

WHyyc is here to give you tips on how you can eat mindFULLy rather than mindLESSly this holiday season!

what is mindful eating anyway?  //

People today are using mindfulness as a tool to help discover a richer relationship with life that includes a healthy relationship with food. Mindful eating simply means being present during the act of eating, not having the mind wander. It involves using all of the senses to truly take in the eating experience. Mindful eating helps people cope with disordered eating, regulate eating habits, modify or change eating behaviours, work with impulse control, reduce binge-eating episodes, & manage weight effectively.

10 mindful eating tips for the holiday season  //

You’re a social being by nature, so eating with others is one of the primary ways you connect with other people. Most social situations around the holidays tend to revolve around food. WHyyc is here for you to give you tips on how to navigate these situations more mindfully to prevent yourself from falling into the trap of mindless eating!

  1. DON’T OVERCOMMIT YOURSELF  ::  Just because there are lots of holiday festivities, you don’t have to attend every one! Make enough time for yourself. It’s important so you don’t feel overly stressed out with commitments. That stress can lead to triggers that cause you to eat even when you’re not hungry!
  2. STAY ACTIVE & TRY TO MAKE A POINT OF EXERCISING REGULARLY  ::  Exercise boosts feel-good neurotransmitters in the brain, which enable us to better practice mindfulness & helps curb cravings.
  3. NOTE YOUR TRIGGERS  ::  Social events are RIFE with triggers to eat and overeat! Before the holiday season comes on full force, take time to reflect on your top 3 food triggers, especially in social situations and during the holidays. Make a backup plan for when you’re triggered, or visualize how you’d like to react to being triggered by food.
  4. BREATHE  ::  First off, when you sit down or enter a holiday party where theres food, is to stop the thinking and attend to your breathing. Take 3 deep breaths periodically while eating.
  5. USE THE POWER OF VISUALIZATION  ::  Picture yourself at a holiday gathering and imagine yourself making mindful food choices.
  6. KEEP COMING BACK TO THE PRESENT MOMENT  ::  You have the opportunity to test SO many delicious foods over the holiday season — but only if you truly are present to actually TASTE them.
  7. NOTICE YOUR EMOTIONS  ::  Pay attention to thoughts and feelings that arise. If you notice you’re feeling nervous, excited, or anxious, tend to those feelings BEFORE you decide to when or what to eat.
  8. BRING A HEALTHY DISH WITH YOU IF A POTLUCK OR FAMILY
    healthy holiday potluck pots

    Try these healthy fast treats for the next holiday gathering! Grab mason jars from a grocery store, put a couple spoonfuls of hummus in the base, & toss in some veggie like celery, carrots and snap peas!

    DINNER  ::  Take the time to try a new recipe for a healthy dish to share with your friends and family this holiday season!

  9. BE THE SLOWEST  ::  You’ll have many opportunities to eat with others this holiday season. Take time to sit back and watch how fast everyone else is eating. Try to eat as slowly as or slower than the slowest eater.
  10. DO ONE THING AT A TIME  ::  When you eat, simply eat, when you socialize, simply socialize. Put down your plate or utensils if someone strikes up a conversation with you or you want to talk to someone else.

want to learn more about mindful eating?  //

Want to learn more about the art of mindful eating? E-mail WHyyc’s Psychologist Sally Powis-Campbell at <sally@wholistichealthyyc.com> to book a free 15-minute phone consult & book a face-to-face appointment.

Happy holidays y’all!