Staying Healthy through the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us.  I feel like “the holiday season” starts with Halloween and ends at the beginning of January.  And so many of these holidays are centered around food & feasting.  Which is awesome!  But can also be problematic.  With all these parties going on you want to stay in shape, look your best, and most importantly, be healthy!   You don’t want to let yourself get run-down and worn out so that you fall ill and miss parties.  We all want to stay healthy & happy so we can get the maximum enjoyment out of our holiday happenings instead of stress, belly aches and exhaustion.


Tips for Healthy Living through the Holiday Season from the FFC Contributors:

Kandi’s Tips:  Do not deprive yourself of anything.  If you want some sweet potatoes with marshmallows (yuck, personally), have some.  However, don’t put a heaping pile on your plate.  Instead, take a regular sized tablespoon and put it on the plate.  You get to have it without going overboard.  For me, deprivation makes me want it more and then I gorge on it.  It’s a vicious cycle.   Also, smaller plates!  The smaller the plate, the less you can pile on.  I eat on kid sized plates now for that reason.

Michelle’s Tips: It is so hard to stay on track with diet and exercise during the holidays.  The season of feasting begins around Halloween and continues until the leftovers are gone after January 1st.  Staying on a healthy diet is challenging this time of year, and it’s super hard to stay motivated to exercise during the cold and gray winter months.  Here are some things I do to stay on track:
1)  Drink lots of water.  It fills me up, makes me want to eat less and keeps me from feeling too tired.
2)  Keep an exercise schedule and try to work out with a buddy.  This keeps me accountable and makes me less likely to skip.
3)  Sign up for holiday runs/walks like Cincinnati’s Thanksgiving Day Race ( or the 2012 Jingle Bell Run/Walk ( This gives you something to train for and forces you to exercise.
4) Try a totally new exercise or something you would not normally do.  The excitement and challenge may keep you motivated.
5)  Check out Pinterest for fun and healthy holiday snacks or potluck foods!

The other day my middle child begged and begged for me to buy a small vegetable tray with ranch dressing.  Normally, I’d say no because this is more expensive and I think of it as something to take to a party. But, I bought it…and he ate half of it in the car on the way home…and not just the ranch dressing.  Be open to things you don’t normally buy.  Get creative and try something different.  And, happy holidays!  You can read Michelle’s blog, I’m Living the Good Life, here—>

Phyllis’ Tips:  Bring a healthy but delicious dish to the family gathering or party to ensure you have a healthy choice.  The one we bring to our family gathering that is otherwise full of unhealthy choices is “Aunt Dorothy’s Spinach Salad” which comes from the family and is devoured by all.  Focus on family or friends more than the food.  Regularly check-in with yourself throughout the day prior to turning to food and ask yourself, “am I hungry?”  If the answer is no, try to think about what you need or are looking for.  Are you tired and could use a nap? Are you lonely and could call a friend? Are you bored and looking for something creative to do or entertaining to do or read?    Want more Healthy Tips?  Check out Phyllis’ Blog, Healthy Happenings.  She is always posting great recipes & healthy living tips!

Katie’s Tips: Get the whole family on board!  We’ve been spending alot of time talking to our kids about healthy eating, and eating unhealthy foods in MODERATION.  We want them to know it’s ok to indulge in junk food occasionally, but not to go overboard.   Having this open discussion with them about healthy eating is educating them and helping them make good decisions on their own.   And like Phyllis said, I have been trying to show up to parties with a dish or appetizer that I know is on the healthier side, so even though we’re munching on junk food we also have a healthy snack to munch on as well.  Everything in moderation!  My other tip is to “schedule in” exercise.   I always have good intentions of exercising, but if I actually write in on my calendar (in ink) that I’m going to exercise I’m more likely to make it happen.  And most important of all…I try to make sure my family gets plenty of rest.  Even though we have lots of events coming up in the next few months I hope to keep my kids on a good sleep schedule to prevent crankiness and sickness.

Healthy Living Resources from our Friends at the Kenton County Public Library:

Family Books

“The sneaky chef to the rescue : 101 all-new recipes and “sneaky” tricks for creating healthy meals kids will love” by Missy Chase Lapine

“Gluten Free Christmas Cookies,” by Ellen Brown

 Children’s Books

What’s on MyPlate series by Mari Schuh

Your Healthy Plate series by Katie Marisco

 Children’s CDs

Exercise party

Fitness fun for kids

Good morning exercises for kids

 Children’s DVDs


Six Fit Kids Workouts with Judy Notte Howard

Safety and Smart Healthy & Fit

Fit Kids: a fun kids workout

Video Games

Wii Fit Plus

Nickelodeon Fit for Wii

Just Dance for xBox

Online Services – Access from any computer with an Internet connection and your Kenton County Public Library card number

Zinio Magazines

  • Clean Eating
  • Diabetic Living
  • Fit Pregnancy
  • Gluten-Free Living
  • Men’s Fitness
  • Natural Home & Garden
  • Prevention
  • Runners World
  • Shape
  • Vegetarian Times
  • Women’s Health
  • Yoga Journal
  • Weight Watchers


Gale Virtual Reference Library

The Gale Encyclopedia of Children’s Health: Infancy through Adolescence

The Gale Encyclopedia of Mental Health

Nutrition and Well-Being A to Z

One Million Things: A Visual Encyclopedia

Worldmark Encyclopedia of Cultures and Daily Life


How will your family stay healthy this holiday season?

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