Should You Stick to a Diet Over the Holidays?

The holidays are fast approaching. You might have already started thanksgiving dinner prep, and Christmas is following hot on its heels. Stores are already filled with festive treats like chocolates, cakes, biscuits, and other delicacies, and many people are already allowing themselves an indulgence.

It can be a fantastic time, when you eat what you want, gain a few lbs without worrying and enjoy yourself. You might have holiday parties coming up as well as meals with family and friends. Many of us spend our evenings feasting on festive snacks and treats and eating huge comforting meals.

But it can also be a difficult time. If you have been dieting or sticking to a specific healthy eating plan like the carnivore diet, you might be worried about the coming weeks. You might wonder if you should stick to your diet, not wanting to throw in the towel after all of your hard work, or give up entirely and come back to it in January, knowing that the temptation might be too much. There’s no right answer, but here are some of the things that you might want to consider. 

Allow Flexibility

Sticking to your diet completely, or not sticking to it at all, aren’t your only options. You could choose to allow yourself some flexibility. Have days off, increase your limits slightly, stop dieting, but keep exercising or change your plan slightly. There are no right or wrong answers, and flexibility is often the best way to enjoy the holidays while avoiding guilt. 

Enjoy Long Winter Walks

You might not want to hit the gym over the holidays. If you are traveling home to see family, or your gym is closed, you might not even be able to. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t exercise. Enjoy long festive walks with your family, play with younger relatives in the park, go ice skating with your friends, and try to keep moving. Long walks after big meals can be especially effective. 

Delight in those Veggies

If you are trying to stay on plan, Christmas dinner can be terrifying. You might be used to piling your plate high and worried about how to enjoy the meal without overindulging. But, most of your Christmas dinner is actually healthy and nutritious. Avoid too much meat, gravy and stuffing, and pile on all those gorgeous veggies. If you crave something sweet, roasted sweet potatoes can be a fantastic alternative to more unhealthy options. 

Watch Portion Sizes

One big meal won’t hurt. But lots of big meals will. If you are spending the holidays with family, there might be lots of big comforting meals to share. Don’t say no, just watch your portion sizes. Try to make vegetables the most significant portion of any meal, and try using a smaller plate if you are struggling to keep control. 

Indulge in Moderation

It’s easy to be tempted by all of the sweet treats on offer, and denying yourself can be upsetting, it’s only Christmas once a year after all. So, don’t refuse treats. Enjoy what you want, but keep moderation in mind. 

Get Your Dancing Shoes On

Christmas parties aren’t just a way to let your hair down and enjoy yourself with friends. They can also be a great way to burn off some of those extra calories and give your body a much-needed workout. Enjoy dancing all night long, and you’ll ache the next day.

Limit Your Alcohol Intake

Alcohol is one of the biggest causes of festive weight gain, and it’s rarely worth it. By all means, enjoy a glass of wine with dinner and have a drink when you go out. But, try to stick to spirits with low-fat tonics and mixers, and drink a glass of water for every alcoholic beverage that you enjoy.

Set Yourself Dates

If you want to enjoy the holidays without worrying about your diet, it’s a good idea to stick to some dates. Give yourself a week or maybe two weeks off. But, once this period is over, get back on it.

Stick to Your Diet if You Want to

The big question that you need to ask yourself is, do you want to stick to your diet over the holidays? Think about how you’d feel in January if you’d gained some weight and lost a little fitness? But, remember that it’s only a few weeks, and the results aren’t likely to be earth-shattering. If you want to overindulge, pig out, enjoy festive events, and you don’t mind how it affects your body, go for it.