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Healthy Holiday Eating: Confidently Eat Your Way Through the Holidays

Holley Samuel RD, LD, CPT, Registered and Licensed Dietitian and Certified Personal Trainer, at The Works Family Health and Fitness Center

Who enjoys eating the exact same foods every single day year round? Is this really a sustainable pattern of eating? Many of us look forward to certain foods during the holidays - like pies, eggnog and stuffing - because they are a part of the tradition and the fun! 

There will be plenty of headlines arguing that you should lose weight, cleanse, detox, exercise more, or substitute healthy recipes during the holidays. While these may have good intentions, they can cause unnecessary stress that can damage relationships with food and exercise.

Balanced eating and exercise habits year round foster healthy relationships with food and physical activity, promote self-confidence, and enhance overall wellness. If these are your priorities over weight loss, check out these tips to relieve some anxiety around food during the holidays:

  1. Try to maintain some of your routine during the holidays. If you know that you have a holiday gathering later in the day, don’t try to “get ahead” by restricting your food intake earlier in the day. This often leads to overeating at the event, which can increase food- related stress.
  2. If you are looking forward to certain foods that are part of your holiday traditions, eat those foods! Giving yourself permission to eat any food, and not classifying any food as “good” or “bad,” usually encourages eating until you are satisfied, but not overstuffed. If you perceive a food as “off limits,” this may lead to you wanting the food even more and losing control. 
  3. Think of exercise as something you are able to do, and not as something that is a chore or punishment for something you ate. Adding movement daily that you enjoy should contribute to overall wellness year round.

Enjoy your holiday season guilt free, and enjoy the rest of your year guilt free too!

The Works Wellness Center, at the Works Family Health and Fitness Center in Somersworth, offers a variety of medical wellness, nutrition, weight management, and corporate wellness programs to help you achieve your best health year round.   

Contact the Wellness Team at or call (603) 742-2163 for more information.

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