Sentara Martha Jefferson HealthWise: Staying healthy during the holidays

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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- One major health concern that accompanies the holidays is waiting to eat all day for those big holiday meals. But there are ways to stay healthy without overindulging.

Patricia Tyndale, a Dietitian at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital, helps patients by going through their eating routine and making adjustments so the patients can adopt a healthier lifestyle.

She says missing meals in preparation for that holiday feast can throw off our body's internal balance.

"If we tend to skip out on meals, by the time we actually sit down to a meal, our brain and our body can't properly communicate and say 'This is a proper portion,' because we've spent so much time not eating. So when we finally get to sit down and eat, we tend to just overdo it," said Tyndale.

The dessert table is usually one of those places where people tend to go overboard. Tyndale suggests that taking some time in between courses, and being picky, could lead to some healthier decisions.

"I would suggest waiting a couple hours after your main meal, before you dig into a dessert. And just pick your favorite. pick one and really focus in on the portion," she said.

And if you're planning on bringing food, you can try to make the dish with some healthier ingredients.

"If you're making dishes yourself, trying to lighten it up using lower sodium, or lighter dairy products are a good way to go about that. Using applesauce or Greek yogurt in your baking is a good, healthier option to lighten things up. I always recommend if you're going to someone's house and you're bringing a dish, bring a vegetable dish," said Tyndale.

Tyndale went on to say that office holiday parties are one of the places where overindulging happens most often. She suggests socializing away from the hors d'oeuvres table to resist the temptation to keep eating when you're full.

If you've never seen a dietitian, Tyndale says the holidays may be the perfect time to check in to make sure you're keeping up with a balanced diet. For more tips on staying healthy during the holidays, click on the link in the Related Links box.



 
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