Whew! Navigating the holidays, with all the holiday hustle and bustle, can make scheduling and keeping an appointment with your dietitian may be low on your priority list. We get it – December is a busy time of year! Or maybe you find yourself thinking, “What’s the point?” with the abundance of food and beverage-focused events and edible treats around every corner.
Our team at McDaniel Nutrition Therapy wants to be part of your holiday self-care! Whether you are a new client or an existing client, whether your focus is on chronic disease prevention or management, improving your relationship with food and your body, or fueling for athletic performance, our dietitians can provide support and strategies for navigating the next few weeks and avoiding the holiday slide and post-holiday slump.
“I know I’m going to give in to the temptation to eat sweets, enjoy more alcoholic beverages than normal, or fill my plate to overflowing at the work potluck – so what’s the point?”
The above represents all or nothing, or black and white, thinking. The all or nothing mentality creates feelings of shame or guilt around food and food choices and is disempowering. Your dietitian can help reframe the thoughts you have about food and your food choices to avoid a downward spiral.
December is the perfect time to engage in reflection.
- What matters most to you? Why do you want to make nutrition and / or health-related changes?
- What changes have you made while working with your dietitian over the past year? What are you proud of?
- What health-supporting behaviors or habits have stuck? What is working well?
- What is not serving you? What do you want to leave behind?
Answering the above questions will help you get the most out of your session!
Every year millions of well-intentioned people make New Year’s resolutions. We understand the temptation AND we want to support you in making long-term sustainable changes – changes that endure well beyond January 31st. December is a great time to renew your commitment to yourself and keeping health appointments is one way to do that!
Navigating the Holidays Like a Pro
Many of the “strategies” people use around holiday eating, like skipping meals to “save up” for a particular meal, backfire big time. Your dietitian can help you create a plan to avoid this trap and ensure you are well-nourished and in a good place to mindfully enjoy your favorite dishes.
Alcohol may be a fun part of holiday celebrations, and it can derail the best of intentions. Alcohol both lowers inhibitions, making it more likely that we will make choices that are not aligned with our overall goals, and it acts as an appetite stimulant – yikes! If you choose to include alcohol in your holiday celebrations, your dietitian can help you plan to drink mindfully and in moderation, including brainstorming fun non-alcoholic beverage options.
This is a time of year when we can all use support to slow down and eat mindfully. Mindful eating practices can help with stress management and mental health during what can be a challenging season.
Be realistic and give yourself grace! Adjusting your expectations is one way of avoiding the “all or nothing” trap. You may not be able to make it to the gym three days a week like you did in November but making it to the gym once a week is much better than not going at all!
Your dietitian can help you adjust your goals so that they are realistic and achievable for the holiday season.
Make It Happen
If you have school-age kids, booking an appointment for early in December, before your kids are on winter break, will increase the odds of you keeping your appointment. Even if you don’t have kiddos at home, the sooner you schedule, the more appointment options your dietitian will have.
If you are an existing client, you can easily find a time that works for you, and self-schedule in our client portal by clicking here. If you don’t see a time that works for you, reach out to your dietitian to get on their wait list.
Once the appointment is made, make sure to add it to your personal and work calendars, and commit to carving out that time for yourself. We look forward to seeing you in December!
Maintaining Mental Health During the Holiday Season (and a Pandemic) – NAMI California