Ask the RD: Eating mindfully during the holiday season

“How can I eat more mindfully during the holiday season?”

Maintaining mindful eating practices during the holiday season can be a transformative way to engage with your relationship with food and ensure a balance of enjoyment and wellness. But what exactly does “mindfully eating” mean? Mindful eating is the art of being fully present during your meals, consciously paying attention to your emotions, sensations, and reactions as you savor each bite. It’s about understanding where your feelings about food are coming from and fostering a healthier connection with what you eat. With the holiday season right around the corner, where tempting treats abound, here are some tips to help you stay mindful while indulging: 

  1. Engage Your Senses: As you sit down for a holiday meal, take a moment to engage your senses. Focus on the colors, textures, and aromas of the dishes before you. Savor the flavors and appreciate the culinary skill. Disconnect from distractions like technology or work, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the experience. Being present in the moment enhances the enjoyment of your food. 
  1. Reframe Desserts: The holiday season often brings forth an abundance of sweet treats. Instead of viewing them as indulgences that you need to resist, consider incorporating them into your meal. By enjoying desserts in moderation alongside other nutrient-rich foods, you can create a more balanced diet and remove negative connotations associated with certain foods. Share this experience with a friend or loved one to reduce stress and promote open conversations about your feelings and experiences. 
  1. Seek Support: If you find yourself struggling with complex emotions related to food during the holiday season, remember that you don’t have to navigate this journey alone. Our Registered Dietitian, Lee July, is here to assist you. She welcomes walk-ins or scheduled appointments for nutrition counseling sessions. Whether you need guidance, reassurance, or just a listening ear, Lee is here to help. Please feel free to reach out to the email listed below to connect with her. 

Incorporating these mindful eating practices into your holiday season can help you create a healthier and more balanced relationship with food. By being present, reframing your approach to treats, and seeking support when needed, you can savor the joy of the season without guilt or stress.