Enjoy the Holidays without the Guilt

family walking together
Wegmans Rochester Division Nutritionist Brittany likes to keep active with her family during the holidays to promote good physical and mental health.

The holidays are in full swing. A favorite time of year for many; filled with family, friends, warm memories, and great food. Tasty dishes fill our holiday table and sweet treats seem to be around every corner. During this year’s unprecedented holiday season that has many forgoing their annual traditions, the last thing you need to worry about is whether or not you should eat your favorite treats and comfort foods. Fortunately, our nutritionists say you can eat well and enjoy a little indulgence this time of the year. Here are few tips from our nutrition team to get you started:

  • “Experience joy with holiday eating. I encourage folks to avoid the mentality of having to “make up” for holiday food choices. Don’t look at your celebration food as something you need to work off or a reason to skip breakfast the next day. Let each decision exist on its own. Holiday food nourishes you with nutrients, comfort, feelings of celebration, connection with tradition and family, and plain old deliciousness – and that’s okay!” — Kirby B. (Rochester)
  • “For many, holiday celebrations include enjoying their favorite beer, glass of wine, or cocktail. To help keep your body hydrated, try alternating alcoholic beverages with non-alcoholic ones, and rely on water to quench your thirst. Fun and festive mocktails are a great way to celebrate if you’re looking to skip the alcohol, and they can be enjoyed by the whole family. My favorite is a faux-mosa, made with Wegmans sparkling water and orange juice.” — Jenny L. (Buffalo)
  • “Focus on an overall healthy pattern of eating during the holidays. A couple of indulgent meals or treats won’t derail your health if you are eating healthfully the majority of the time. An easy way to make healthy eating a habit is to enjoy more half-plate healthy meals, where you fill half your plate with fruit, veggies, or salad, and the other half with anything else. I love this approach because it automatically helps you portion control your plate, while still enjoying your holiday favorites!” — Ericka S. (New England)
  • “Celebrate family with time-honored recipes and traditions. My mother-in-law always made the best Monkey Bread; but only for Christmas brunch, which made it extra special. She left us too soon, but by carrying on this tradition each year, I feel connected to her.” — Trish K. (Rochester)
  • “Remember to keep moving. We typically have a million other things on our to-do list, though it’s important to sprinkle in opportunities to stay active. I enjoy going for a brisk walk after a meal or trying to keep up with my kids on the ski slopes. Maintaining some form of regular movement is wonderful for both your physical and mental health – especially important during the busy holiday season.” — Brittany R. (Rochester)
  • “Make your cookie/dessert trays half-plate healthy by adding fruit to the tray. Red fruits look fabulously festive during the holidays. Pomegranate seeds, cranberries, red raspberries, strawberries, and even red grapes are a beautiful way to add beneficial nutrients to your sweet indulgences.” — Marda H. (Pennsylvania)
  • “‘Tis the season to celebrate food! Enjoy your holiday favorites while keeping your healthy eating goals on track. Here’s how – practice the 80/20 rule. Eat foods that support health 80% of the time, while giving yourself the freedom to enjoy “treats” 20% of the time. You don’t have to eat healthy 100% of the time to be healthy. Cheers!” — Kathleen O. (Rochester)

Go ahead and enjoy that special holiday cookie made from grandma’s recipe. With a little preparation, you can still enjoy the season healthfully. Most of all, remember what this wonderful time of year is all about – connecting and celebrating with the people you care most about.

Happy Holidays!

The Wegmans Nutrition Team