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Healthy Holiday Tips from the Office of Health Promotion and Wellness

It can be easy to overdo it during the holiday season: fitting in all the events and parties, completing year-end projects, managing the stress. The WVU Office of Health Promotion and Wellness wants to encourage you to make this holiday season a better one for your mind, body. and spirit. Rachel Wattick, a Human Nutrition and Foods alumna, provides ideas to help navigate the food this holiday season, so you can spend your energy on more important matters!

1. Add some veggie dishes to your normal spread. You don't need to cut out your staple foods, just throw in some healthy options and try to consume those first before moving to the hearty dishes.

2. Don't go to holiday dinner on a completely empty stomach. We tend to not eat all day in preparation for the holiday feast. But this causes us to eat too much too quickly and probably leads to a stomachache. Have at least a light snack before the main event.

4. Wait 10 seconds before heading back for more. Instead of diving right in as soon as you finish your first plate, pause for a moment. Your body may not feel full immediately, so give it a few minutes to catch up.

3. Use a smaller plate. This will help control portions and your plate will still look full.

5. Go for a walk or play some football before or after dinner. This will help to settle your stomach and can be a great way to have fun with others.

6. Remember: food is not the main event. Family and friends are! Food doesn't have to be the highlight of the holiday. Enjoy what really matters, spending time with and being thankful for loved ones.