Resisting sweet temptations during the holidays

By Rabia Ilyas

While the holiday season brings lots of joy, spirit and festivities to people, it also comes with a holiday eating frenzy. In fact, it is probably one of the biggest times of year where people adopt unhealthy eating habits because of the holiday stress. 

While a difficult feat to accomplish, it is possible to fight the cravings and resist the urge to eat all things chocolate when presented with holiday treats.

A good way to stay healthy during the holiday season is to find alternative options to those holiday recipes packed with sugar. For example, taking healthy snacks with you is a great way to resist buying sugar cookies and cupcakes when standing in line for a cup of coffee. Trail mix, for example, is a great snack to keep around.

People are also more likely to buy desserts at bakeries and coffee shops because they look tempting. Avoiding these places and spending money on low calorie desserts is another great way to stay clear of the sugar. 

Making holiday treats at home is probably cheaper and healthier. Instead of buying sugar cookies iced with frosting, making whole wheat sugar cookies at home is healthier and can be fun to make with the whole family.

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Overeating is another common habit that comes with the holiday season. Holiday gatherings and last-minute shopping can lead to a lot of stress, which can cause some people to eat excessively. 

It’s important to watch your diet and maintain a regularity of meals throughout the day. Skipping a meal and eating excessively during dinnertime is not the best approach to staying healthy. 

Instead, eating small meals throughout the day while still treating yourself to desserts is OK. Eating everything at once may satisfy your hunger temporarily, but may lead to stomach aches later on.

Finally, what is most likely the hardest thing to avoid during the holiday season—for me, at least—is the consumption of chocolate. 

Chocolate is incorporated into almost everything, from snacks to meals and even drinks. While giving up chocolate is not a viable option for many (including me), it’s important to balance out your diet and not consume all things chocolate for every meal. 

For instance, pairing fruit with chocolate or eating chocolate-covered pretzels is healthier than just eating bars of chocolate or greasy chocolate chip cookies. Also, dark chocolate is healthier than milk chocolate, and can serve as an alternative chocolate option.

The holiday season is often the most exciting time of the year, but it can also be one of the unhealthiest if a balanced diet is not maintained. Many become vulnerable to the chocolate-adorned cakes and cream pies in the glass windows of bakeries, but these temptations can be resisted with a little self-discipline.  

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