Five Tips for Staying Healthy this Holiday Season in spite of National Eating Healthy Day

Five Tips for Staying Healthy this Holiday Season in spite of National Eating Healthy Day

12-03-2013

FIVE TIPS FOR STAYING HEALTHY THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

IN SPITE OF NATIONAL EATING HEALTHY DAY

RENO, Nev. – Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2013 – The holiday season has finally arrived and we know how hard it can be to maintain a healthy diet this time of year. That is why Saint Mary's Regional Medical Center is teaming up with the American Heart Association to raise awareness about National Eating Healthy Day on Wednesday, Nov. 6. On this day, we are encouraging the community to make small, healthy changes and encourage good nutrition.

From pumpkin lattes and gingerbread cookies to peppermint bark, not overindulging in these once-a-year treats can be quite difficult. Staying healthy this time of year doesn't mean you have to give up your favorite holiday treats, but instead learning how to make healthy habits.

"Your risk of developing heart disease will be minimized if you focus on healthy eating. It's important to understand what's in your food, eliminate or reduced the amount of processed foods you consume and be mindful of the size of portions served," said Richard Bryan, Jr., MD, FACC – Medical Director, Saint Mary's Cardiology

So, to help avoid the holiday guilt, we've put together some simple tips to try this year:

  1. From office parties to family gatherings, the holiday season is filled with social gatherings so, eat before going to events. This way you won't be tempted by cravings.
  2. Be mindful of portion sizes and stop eating before you are full.
  3. Slow down on the sodium. Too much sodium increases your risk of heart disease, stroke and other health problems. You can easily alter your favorite recipes by cutting back on the salt.
  4. Limit alcohol consumption. Although this is a time for celebration, alcoholic beverages tend to have hidden calories that can pack on the pounds.
  5. Try not to stress! This can be a hectic time of year so plan ahead and don't sweat it if you blow it on your grandma's homemade pie. Just remember that with each new day comes the opportunity to eat healthy.

"Adopting healthy behaviors happens one day at a time," said Rachel K. Johnson, Ph.D., MPH, RD, chair of the American Heart Association's nutrition committee and professor of nutrition and medicine at the University of Vermont in Burlington. "If you devote one day to healthy eating, you will know you can do it again and learn to enjoy it!"

Start 2014 off right by making it the year you don't need a New Year's resolution to take off the holiday pounds. Healthy eating leads to healthy living and a happy life, so enjoy the season and have a very merry holiday!

For more healthy eating tips, recipes and guides, visit heart.org/healthliving or visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/saintmarysreno.

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Saint Mary's Regional Medical Center

Saint Mary's Regional Medical Center based in Reno, Nev. is a 380-bed acute care hospital offering inpatient, outpatient and wellness services. Nationally recognized and accredited by the Joint Commission, Saint Mary's offers a robust line of services including a top-rated Center for Cancer featuring the region's only CyberKnife radiosurgery delivery system, state-of-the-art William N. Pennington Emergency Room and Senior ER and a Cardiology program dedicated to long-term wellness. The health system also operates a fully-integrated Medical Group and a state-of-the-art Center for Health & Fitness. As a long-standing community partner, Saint Mary's is dedicated to ensuring the health and wellness of northern Nevada remains strong. For more information, visit www.saintmarysreno.com.

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