SURVIVING THE HOLIDAY SEASON: HEALTH TIPS

The holiday season can be a challenging, and well, tempting time of year. It can be difficult to stay on track with healthy eating habits, and many people find that by the end of the season, they are tired, worn down, and maybe even a bit heavier than when they started out.

So, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 tips to survive the holiday season, created by the fabulous Diane [Registered Nutritionist]. These tips will help you stay fresh, alert and most of all, healthy!

  1. Make sure that you carry water with you at all times. During this busy season, we are often out shopping, running errands, or visiting with friends. If you don’t have water, you can often become sluggish and tired, or worse – you’ll reach for one of those sugary Christmas themed drinks. Water will help keep you refreshed, and help curb cravings.
  2. Bring your own snacks! Yes, this may seem like a pain – but it can be quite the life saver. If you have your own snacks, you’ll be less likely to reach for something on the go – this means you will be making wiser choices and your body will thank you at the end of the day. Our favourites: almonds, sunflower seeds, kale chips & fresh fruit.
  3. Do not skip a meal (and that includes breakfast). Skipping a meal will not only leave you feeling tired and imbalanced, but it was also increase your chances of eating unhealthy later in the day. It has been proven that breakfast eaters and people who do not skip meals are more likely to maintain a healthy weight, and are happier overall.
  4. Never arrive at a party hungry. Now, we all know that those little appetizers at the party are delicious. But if you arrive hungry, you’ll be eating much more than you probably intended to. Instead, have a light meal or snack prior to your events, to help you keep your appetite (and cravings) in line.
  5. Use a smaller plate and eat slowly. The smaller your plate, the less food you can pile on. Also, if you eat slowly, you will ‘fill up’ more quickly, meaning you will want less food. It’s a win-win situation!
  6. Load up on the greens! That’s right, make sure you are eating lots of veggies and salads while at your holiday events. By filling yourself up with these good foods first, you’ll still have room to sample some of the other treats later, without going overboard.
  7. Pick and choose. This means, don’t deprive yourself! You deserve to have a little fun. So decide what your fun will be before starting the night. Will it be some wine, or maybe a slice of cake? If you set these goals at the start of the night, you’ll be less likely to indulge. Besides, we believe in the 80/20 rule – 80% of what you eat should be good, healthy and wholesome. The other 20% is your fun food – so go on, live on the wild side!
  8. Always remember, you do not have to finish your plate. This preset notion that we have is ridiculous, and you’d be better off forgetting it. If you’re no longer hungry, do not feel obligated to keep eating!
  9. Learn the secrets of food combining. Certain foods, when eaten together can actually cause weight gain and discomfort. So instead, try to eat veggies & protein/meat, OR choose veggies & starches (bread, pasta, etc.). But don’t eat them all together!
  10. Make a plan for the season, and set realistic goals. Promise to stick to it, and at the end of the day, you will feel much better and proud for making it through.

Remember, surviving the holidays isn’t about deprivation. It’s about balance, and making smart choices. So cheers to a fabulous holiday season! 

* Check out Healthy You Naturally for more fabulous health tips, articles and information from Diane!

HOLIDAY APPETIZERS

At BOXNOIRE, there is one thing about the holidays that we absolutely love – the food. We’ve been cooking up a storm for all of our holiday parties, and we’ve shared some of our favourite recipes below. They are all super easy, and are certain to please even the pickiest of guests! Which will you try first? xx

Mediterranean Skewers copyThese mediterranean skewers are a fantastic appetizer option that requires little prep work and no cooking.

INGREDIENTS
– 
Cherry tomatoes
– Mini Bocconcini
– Pitted Green Olives
– Artichoke
– Meat of your choice
– Olive oil
– Sea salt
– Spices

DIRECTIONS
Wash and prep all of the different ingredients. Line up the ingredients in the order of your choice on wooden spears. Play around with different combinations. Lay out the finished spears onto a platter, and drizzle with olive oil, sea salt and any spices of your choice (we suggest basil).

StuffedMushroomCaps copy

These stuffed mushrooms caps are a party favourite and super easy to prepare!

INGREDIENTS
– Mushroom caps
– Goat cheese
– Red peppers
– Sea salt
– Basil
– Jalapeños (optional)

DIRECTIONS
Preheat the oven to 350º C. Wash the mushrooms and remove the stems to create the caps. In a small bowl, mix the goat cheese, diced red peppers, sea salt and basil (jalapeños can be diced and added for an extra kick). Place the mushrooms on a baking sheet, and scoop the goat cheese mixture into each mushroom cap (be generous!). Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes or until soft.

HoneyBaguetteBites copy

These are an easy snack that is best served hot.

INGREDIENTS
– 
Baguette
– Goat cheese
– Prosciutto
– Honey
– Thyme
– Cracked pepper

DIRECTIONS
Preheat oven (broil – high). Slice the baguette and lay out on a baking sheet. Spread goat cheese onto each individual baguette piece. Roll a small piece of prosciutto and place on top of the goat cheese. Drizzle honey over each baguette piece, and sprinkle with thyme and cracked pepper. Place in the oven on broil until the edges are golden.