Wellness: Healthy Holiday hacks and funny mocktails! | Community

Between the winter weather, abundance of sweet treats, and chaos of coordinating family gatherings, it can be difficult to maintain your usual routines during the holidays. Check out some of these tips and tricks for finding the balance in enjoying holiday festivities from Lewis Martin, Nutrition Director at the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council, followed by a few creative “merry mocktails” for those looking to take a break from alcohol this season. :

Healthy Holiday Hacks

Make breakfast the most important meal of your day: Some people believe that by skipping out on the food they ate earlier in the day, they can compensate later on and load up on calories at a gathering without consequence. The truth is, this sabotaging practice can cause you to eat well beyond your daily needs in one sitting, causing spikes in blood sugar and prompting your body to store unneeded excess energy.

Consuming a high protein, high fiber breakfast at the start of your day can help you better manage hunger, and give you solid control when dinner time arrives. Try options like eggs with whole wheat toast, lowfat Greek yogurt with high fiber granola, or oatmeal cooked in lowfat milk.

Brighten up your beverage choice: Soda, beer, and cocktails can sneak hundreds of calories into a meal without having any effect on how full you feel.

Instead, enjoy sparkling water or a cozy hot cup of coffee/tea. If you’re hankering for something sweeter, you can even try diet or “zero” soda options, which don’t contain any calories or sugar.

Double up on veggies: If you’re hardwired to clean your plate, use your impulse to your advantage. Load up on non-starchy vegetables like roasted carrots, steamed green beans, or savory collard greens in place of stuffing, potatoes, or bread. Pair with your favorite protein choice, like turkey, and you have a seriously delicious meal.

Don’t stop moving: With so much energy from calories, it’s a great responsibility to use that energy! Squeeze in your fitness routine before heading over to or hosting a gathering; catch up with friends and family on a brisk walk before your meal; or start a new tradition by hosting a backyard Turkey Bowl!

Bring your own, healthier dessert: Holiday desserts are often the most calorie and sugar-dense options at gatherings, and can wreak havoc on your efforts to stay on track with your health goals. Preparing a lighter, lower sugar dessert can not only provide confidence that you’ll be sticking with ideal food choices, but will give you the chance to share something awesome with your loved ones. Head over to our Healthy Recipes page on the Tillamook County Wellness website for more inspiration!

Rethink the drink: Many holiday parties have alcohol as an optional drink for adults. Did you know that more than 1 in 5 Oregonians drink excessively? Examples of excessive drinking include binge or heavy drinking. Excessive drinking is harmful to a person’s body and can increase the risk of certain cancers (breast, colon, prostate, etc.), increase the risk of heart disease, and can lead to changes in behavior or mood. To learn more about you risk, check out the Oregon Health Authority’s ‘Rethink the Drink’ campaign located at: www.rethinkthedrink.com.

The Merry Mocktail List

Take a break from alcohol or pace yourself this holiday season and try a Merry Mocktail! These drinks are a delicious substitute for alcoholic beverages. Be aware of the sugar content and look for low-sugar or sugar substitute options and fresh, natural juices. Each of the drinks below are poured over ice but can also be made as a martini or in a champagne flute. You can also find some delicious and refreshing nonalcoholic sparkling hops drinks in stores such as Lagunitas Hoppy Refresher, H2OPS Sparkling Hop Water, and Pelican Brewery Sparkle Hops. Cheers!

Mocktail Mule

Ginger beer or ale, cranberry juice, 4-5 fresh cranberries, 2 slices of lime, mint

Muddle mint and lime with ice, add 4-5 fresh cranberries and more ice, and fill half with ginger beer and half with cranberry juice. Top with fresh mint and lime.

Sparkle Razz

Razz-Cranberry La Croix, cranberry Kombucha, fresh rosemary, 2 slices of limes, 4 raspberries Muddle raspberries, rosemary and lime at the bottom of the glass, fill with ice, fill half with Kombucha and half with La Croix. Top with a sprig of fresh rosemary.

Orange Cinnamon Fizz

Sparkling cider or ginger ale, orange juice, 2 slices of lemons or limes, ½ teaspoon cinnamon mixed with 3 tablespoons sugar (or sugar substitute) Rub a lemon or lime around the rim of your glass and then dip into the sugar/cinnamon mix. Fill the glass with ice, add orange juice and squeeze lemon or lime. Top off with sparkling cider or ginger ale.

Other wellness questions? Email us at info@tillamookcountywellness.org. For more local health and wellness information, visit www.tillamookcountywellness.org or follow Tillamook County Wellness on Facebook and Instagram.


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