The holidays are about many positive things - family, friends, fun activities. But they're also full of sugar, which is great for the taste buds but not so great for your diet.
It's hard to avoid the sugar-coated, tasty treats this time of the year, even with the knowledge that sugar consumption has been linked to a variety of health issues such as heart disease, obesity, mood disorders, and more.
Here are some tips to help you avoid going on a sugar bender this holiday season.
Let Others Know
Telling people that you're limiting your sugar consumption sets an expectation while also limiting any hurt feelings that occur when you decline someone's favorite holiday treat.
Avoid Fast Food
The reasons why fast food will ruin your diet are well-documented, including that most of its choices are loaded with sugar. It's easy to fall into the fast food trap when you're out Christmas shopping, but look for healthier alternatives instead.
Reach For Water Instead
Sugar cravings can easily arise when you're around so many sweets. But instead of caving, drink a big glass of water instead. It will help fill you up and the nice dose of hydration will make you feel stronger and more in the moment.
Skip The Juice
Studies have shown that juice isn't necessary for anyone's diet and can even be compared to drinking soda (which also wreaks havoc on your diet). Juice is simply liquid calories and contains no fiber. Instead, flavor your water by adding sliced fruit or by freezing berries into ice cubes.
Use Natural Sweeteners
If your main goal is to cut out refined sugar, then consider using natural sweeteners for your coffee, tea, and yogurt. Honey, stevia, and agave nectar are great alternatives.
Limit Your Alcohol Consumption
The holidays can also present many situations in which alcohol is prevalent. Alcohol is not only high in sugar but it can also weaken your resolve and cause you to indulge in those sweets that you're trying to avoid.
You may not be able to avoid making cookies and candies, especially if you're counted on to bring treats to holiday gatherings, school functions, office parties, etc. But if you don't have to, don't. You'll eliminate the temptation of sampling your own delicious creations.
Maintain Your Normal Diet
You may think that scrimping on a meal in anticipation of a special treat or bigger meal is OK. But maintaining a balanced diet will keep your blood sugar - and sugar cravings - under control.
A personal trainer like Ralph Roberts will help you combine nutrition and fitness to achieve your wellness goals. Get a free personal training session and see for yourself!
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