Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona helps to stay on diet track during holiday season

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona is a paid advertiser of Sonoran Living Live

The holidays are here, and with them come loads of carbs, calories and candies. It's a challenging time for anyone who wants to eat healthy, but that doesn't mean that the season should instill fear. There are plenty of ways to stay healthy - and Registered Nurse, Cristin Connor of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona has five tips to avoiding weight gain over the coming weeks.

1.    First, get moving. Try to increase your calorie burning to offset the amount of high-fat foods you'll be eating. That way, you won't gain any weight! Between work parties, family gatherings, holiday meals and gifted treats - it's hard to avoid consuming additional calories in November and December, so look for ways to be more active. For instance, you can incorporate extra bouts of movement throughout the day by parking further from store entrances, taking extra laps around the mall, and moving more during the workday.
2.    Don't skip breakfast. A healthy, balanced meal in the morning should include healthy carbs, lean protein, and fiber to get your metabolism going. It'll also help you from overindulging during the rest of the day. Try an egg white omelet with spinach, tomatoes and a slice of whole grain bread or plain yogurt with fresh fruit and granola.
3.    Don't let the buffet table get the better of you. Stay aware of the portion sizes as you're putting food on your plate, and remember to keep the food balanced - with about half of your meal consisting of vegetables. Avoid high-fat and high-calorie temptations such as cheese platters, dips and gravies. It shouldn't be the food that's the focus, but rather the family and friends. Enjoy your time with them.
4.    Don't drink too many calories. Holiday beverages, whether they're alcoholic or non-alcoholic, can pack on excess calories very quickly. For instance, just half a cup of eggnog is about 200 calories, plus the saturated fat and simple sugars. Beers frequently contain between 200 and 300 calories. As a general rule, the higher the alcohol content of a drink, the more calories it will contain. A 5 oz. glass of red wine contains around 120 calories. Try mixing that with a calorie free sparkling water for a festive beverage without too many calories.  
5.    Be realistic. Make a goal to maintain and not gain weight during the holidays - attempting to lose weight or follow a strict diet is often a road to failure.  Just remember, while the holidays are only around once a year, the excess weight you gain during the holidays can affect your waistline and health for a lifetime.

*This is not a medical recommendation, anyone with concerns or questions about their health should contact their physician. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona is an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona is a paid advertiser of Sonoran Living Live

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