We interviewed health and nutrition professionals about holiday weight gain and found that the three top areas of concern for staying trim during the holiday season are (in order of importance):
- Maintaining a regular exercise schedule
- Avoiding too many calories from parties and foods
- Eating healthfully on the run with a busy schedule
So, how can you help your clients combat the “holiday waist?" Try some of these great ideas from our contributors...
- Susan Davis Allen, MS, RD, plans to send quick, informative tips every day throughout the holidays, including little facts about exercise and nutrition. She's also going to distribute healthful recipes.
- Jill Davidson is conducting a variety of timely cooking demonstrations including Healthful and Hearty Soups, Holiday Appetizers, and Gifts of Health. We thought they were right on target for combating the biggest hurdles for staying lean throughout the holidays!
- One dietitian who works in a dialysis center will have her staff cook a full renal-friendly holiday meal and provide the recipes for what they serve. They like to show their patients that everyone can eat food that is both healthful and tasty.
- Jennifer Watson conducts a healthful cooking class that focuses on holiday desserts.
- Along the same lines, Kristen N. Roscioli provides recipes and healthful baking ingredient substitution information to clients.
- A wellness coordinator is conducting a trivia contest on a variety of nutrition trivia topics. Winners will receive a fruit and vegetable voucher. The coordinator will also provide recipes for healthful holiday snacks -- one each week through the holiday season.
- Carol C. Schlitt, Extension Educator for Nutrition and Wellness at the University of Illinois Extension, is conducting several holiday diabetic delights workshops with hands-on food preparation sessions featuring holiday foods that are appropriate for diabetics. She is also sponsoring a healthful cooking showcase, which features 12 food demonstrators throughout the day. The demonstrations are on a variety of topics from healthful desserts, nutritious appetizers, to 5-ingredient recipes, and more.
What are your favorite ways to communicate health lessons during the holidays? Let us know by tweeting @foodhealth or writing on our Facebook wall.
Check out these holiday education resources in the Nutrition Education Store:
Stephanie Ronco has been editing in a professional capacity for the past 10 years. In addition to her work as an editor, Ronco has also served as a ghostwriter and writing tutor. A voracious reader, Ronco loves watching language evolve and change. When she’s not delving into her latest project, Ronco can be found teaching acting classes, performing in community theater, or sailing with her husband.