It seems every year, as the last pieces of leftover Halloween candy are finished up, articles start to appear on how to have a healthier holiday season. These stories are packed with suggestions on how to eat better, what exercises are most beneficial, and even recipes for low-carb, low-cal options for your favorite holiday dishes.
The idea of a holiday overall can be overwhelming, especially if you have diabetes. We’ve rounded up three obtainable habits you can implement now for a healthier new year.
Why is it important?
Eating and exercise patterns directly influence how your body produces and uses a sugar-regulating hormone called insulin. If your body cannot properly produce insulin or prevents insulin from functioning as intended, it can lead to a life-altering disease called diabetes. Over 30 million U.S. adults have diabetes, and an additional 84 million have prediabetes. Diabetes can lead to a greater risk of stroke, heart disease, vision loss, kidney failure, and other serious conditions.
Try implementing these three manageable strategies to have a healthier holiday season and improve your overall health.
Drink It Down
Have a glass of water when you wake up every morning and before every meal. A glass of water primes your digestive system and also will help your brain to recognize better when you’re full. It takes roughly 20 minutes for your brain to register that you are satiated.
Since many meals can be finished within 20 minutes, it is easy to overeat. A glass of water approximately 30 minutes before eating will help your brain recognize you’re full. It might even prevent you from going back for unnecessary seconds.
Step it up
Going for a quick walk before you eat will decrease the amount of fat and sugar that accumulate in your blood after a meal. A brisk walk elevates the body’s temperature and will decrease your appetite.
A quick walk before dinner carries other benefits like lowering your blood pressure and boosting endorphins which can help perk up your mood.
Balance it Out
While there is no need to ban Grandma’s stuffing at Thanksgiving, it is a good strategy to be conscious of what you’re eating and balance your nutrition choices.
If you indulge in one food for a side dish, choose a healthier option for your second. Balancing your plate can help lead to an enjoyable holiday season without additional weight gain.
If you have prediabetes or diabetes or are interested in speaking with a provider about improving your health, Kettering Health has a team of physicians, dietitians, and nurses dedicated to diabetes prevention and treatment. Find a location near you.
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