DIET&FITNESS Published December26, 2014 By Staff Reporter

Anticipating Events, Setting Reasonable Expectations, and Staying Active: Essential to Staying Healthy and Fit During the Holidays- CDC

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SEATTLE, WA - JULY 25: Chicken salad entree at The Kingfish Cafe on July 25, 2014 in Seattle, Washington
(Photo : Suzi Pratt | Getty Images Entertainment)

It can be difficult to stay healthy and in shape during the holidays, special events, or while on vacation, what with the plethora of food and beverage choices and the general laid back atmosphere the season can bring.

Thankfully, the Centers for Disease and Prevention Control (CDC) have provided some key tips in handling such events. The following information has been listed in the CDC's Lifestyle Coach Facilitation Guide: Post-Core.

Anticipate the event

- Think about what foods and drinks will be served and if you can make special requests (i.e., salad dressing on the side, club soda with lime to drink, a lean meat or vegetarian item).

- Plan out how you will spend your fat grams and calories for the day.

- Think ahead about ways to control your calories during the evening (i.e., drinking lots of water, limiting appetizers and desserts, etc.).

- Focus on the non-eating aspects of the event that you enjoy.

Plan pleasures other than food or drink

- Plan the kind of holiday, vacation, or special event  that you want, and make it healthy!

- Think about  what  you can do to stay active.  Can you make physical activity  a part  of your holiday, vacation, or special event? A morning or evening walk, swimming laps, or dancing could easily fit the bill.

Hold a family meeting ahead of time

- How  will we handle food and eating  out?

- Can we find a fun way to all be physically active this year?

- Ask your  family to agree to encourage you to eat healthy and be physically active.

- Talk about  other  ways  your family can help you maintain your goals.

Set reasonable expectations

- Continue to keep track of your eating  and  physical activity.

- Plan to maintain your weight - it may not be realistic to expect to lose weight.

- Let go a little.  Eat something special  - choose the best, and have a small portion.

Decide what to do about alcohol

- Drinking alcohol may lower self-control, making you more likely to eat and drink beyond what you otherwise would.

- If you drink, be aware of the calories you are consuming.

Build in ways to be active

- Be a little more active with any extra time you have.

- Park further away and walk when  doing  holiday errands or sight-seeing.

- Look for seasonal ways  to be active that can become  traditions, such as visiting parks,  window shopping at a brisk pace, or even sledding.


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