The arrival of November each year means one thing: The holidays are right around the corner. And if you’re committed to a healthy lifestyle, you may be also looking for small ways to balance out the indulgence. Traditional holiday fare is delicious, but because it’s usually a change from what is normally on the menu, keeping up with small, consistent habits can help you feel great all season long.
In fact, holiday food is a little much to eat every day of the holiday season alone, which is why the USDA came up with five easy tips for healthy holiday eating. It’s not about avoiding your favorite foods; those once-a-year treats are worth every bite. Instead, it’s about making sure you’re eating well when you’re not indulging in your favorite treats. Here’s what (and how) to eat in between all the fancy parties, cookie exchanges, and big family meals sprinkled throughout the months of November and December.
Breakfast is still the most important meal of the day
Whether you’re in charge of the turkey, the sides, the pies, the entertainment, the accommodations, or all of the above, you can’t make it through a busy holiday season without enough fuel. Eating a hearty, healthy breakfast every day will power you through even the craziest of schedules. For fans of a make-ahead breakfast, our Tuna Frittata with Crispy Pancetta, Feta, and Spinach is an excellent option. It tastes incredible hot, cold, or at room temperature—and since it’s loaded with protein, healthy fats, and fiber, it’ll keep you full until lunch time.
Put fruits and veggies front and center
A big, colorful salad is the perfect compliment to all those rich, heavy meals and decadent desserts. Greens and fresh veggies ensure you get plenty of fiber, while nutritious add-ins like beans, nuts, and our premium tuna provide protein, unsaturated fat, and delicious flavor. Our Shaved Fennel and Tuna Salad is especially good in late fall and winter, when fresh fennel is at its peak. It has a bright and herbaceous flavor profile thanks to plenty of lemon juice, capers, and fresh parsley. If you’re craving something light and refreshing, this recipe is exactly what you’re looking for.
Choose healthy cooking techniques
Choose recipes that use steaming, boiling, blanching, and air frying, like our Niçoise Inspired Salad. This take on a classic salade niçoise marries blanched green beans, boiled potatoes, and hard-boiled eggs with a simple vinaigrette and Genova Yellowfin Tuna in Olive Oil for a satisfying, high-protein meal.
Don’t forget to exercise
This doesn’t necessarily mean you need to carve out time for a full gym workout while balancing cooking, baking, and an influx of guests. Just do your best to get outside for a little while every day. Even something as simple as gathering the family for a post-dinner walk can get your heart rate up and make a huge difference in your mood. Or, for bonus Cool Aunt or Uncle Points, spend time playing with your littlest relatives or volunteer for playground duty—the kids will love it, their parents will be thrilled, and you’ll get a workout.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Finally, don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated is important enough on a daily basis, but especially important during the holiday season. Keep your water bottle filled and within arm’s reach—and if you find it hard to drink plain water, stock up on your favorite seltzer flavors. (For a little something extra, add a splash of cranberry juice, cider, or bitters.) You’ll be so glad you did.