How to Stay on Track During the Holidays with Kelly LeVeque

Kelly LeVeque is a certified holistic nutritionist, wellness expert and health coach and new mama, who guided our own inspiring mama, Jessica Alba, on her postpartum nutrition journey. Using a practical and always optimistic approach, Kelly helps all her clients improve their health, achieve their goals and develop sustainable habits to live a healthy and balanced life. As one of our Honest Ambassadors, she shares amazing advice related to nutrition and an overall healthy lifestyle.

This month, we asked for her tips on how to stay on track during a holiday season full of parties and on-the-go days and nights.

Here’s what she told us:

The holiday season has officially started, which means your schedule will soon be packed full of parties and you’ll probably be surrounded by more pies and cookies then ever. It’s easy to let a little over-indulgence guilt send you into a crash dieting spiral — but don’t let that happen.

Resorting to short-term diets and blood-sugar-sabotaging juice cleanses won’t do much more you when they end up leaving you feeling hungrier, cranky, and just blah. And when that happens, you’re more likely to make more less-than-healthy food choices. So, it’s time to stop the cycle before it begins, and instead focus on incorporating some simple tools into your day that can help you get back on track and feel great without the drama.

1.  Commit to eating one clean meal a day

Making unhealthy decisions can perpetuate poor eating at every meal. It doesn’t have to be perfect but committing to having a Fab 4 smoothie (recipe here) for breakfast everyday or a big green salad for lunch everyday ensures you have balance and don’t go off the reservation and feel the need to diet in the new year.

2. Hydrate first thing

The morning after a holiday meal or party, make hydrating your first priority. Drink at least 2 glasses of water right when you wake up. If you indulged on sweets, carbs, or alcohol the night before then chances are your blood sugar is till elevated when you wake up. Drinking plenty of water will help get your blood sugar back into a normal range. Then after those 2 glasses, aim to drink 8 more throughout the day.

3. Wait to eat breakfast 12 hours after dinner

Say you had dinner at 8pm the night before, then you’ll want to wait until at least 8am to eat breakfast. (Bonus points if you squeeze a workout in before breakfast, too!). The reason it’s ideal to give yourself 12 hours between dinner and breakfast is because you’re body needs the the time to fully digest and reset.

4. Move/sweat (before breakfast)

Getting in a workout first thing is even more important after indulging. Even if it’s just a walk with the fam or a few yoga poses, it all helps you burn off some of that extra stored glucose in your blood and help you reset. Take it to the next level by signing up your family for a turkey trot and make it a yearly tradition. Plus, when you move and sweat first thing (even when that left-over pie is calling your name) you’ll feel so much better after moving, which gives you a better chance of making better food choices all day. Plus, when your blood sugar stays elevated you actually want to eat more carbs and sugar. So doing what you can to get your blood sugar levels regulated first thing in the day will set you up for success.

5. Focus on protein + non-starchy veggie leftovers  

To hack post-holiday food leftovers temptation, make just enough of the starchy, sugary sides for just the meal. Then, make double or triple the protein and veggie dishes. This way your leftovers are clean and you don’t end up eating pie everyday for a week. One piece of pie is a celebration — the entire pie, not so much.

6. Keep alcohol to 3 nights a week (or less)

With a schedule full of parties and get-togethers it would be easy to find yourself drinking almost every night. Look at your schedule and pick the nights you plan to drink alcohol, ideally keeping those nights to less than half the week (3 nights or less). Alcohol can affect our judgment and during the holidays people can end up drinking more nights.