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Have a Heart-Healthy Holiday Season

Have a Heart-Healthy Holiday Season

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

The holiday season is just around the corner. In fact, Thanksgiving is only three weeks away! As a firefighter or first responder, you know it is important to focus on your health and make sure you are ready for the job at hand. But it can be really hard to worry about eating right when so many delicious holiday foods are waiting at every corner to tempt you.

But never fear! You CAN get through the holiday season without completely giving up on good health. Remember, you can have a taste of your favorite holiday goodies or even skip healthy eating for a meal without abandoning a healthy diet. Use the 80/20 rule to guide you – eat healthy 80 percent of the time and leave the other 20 percent to indulge in the foods you are craving. It is how you eat the majority of the time that counts. You just have to remember that breaking your healthy eating habits on occasion is no reason to abandon them altogether.

If you disregard healthy eating completely, imagine how you will feel in January when you have to start from scratch to lose those that excess holiday weight. Not to mention how you will feel trying to accomplish your job as a firefighter while carrying around those needless extra pounds.

The NVFC’s Heart-Healthy Firefighter Cookbook can also help you make it through the holidays with delicious food that won’t attack your waistline. It features over 60 flavorful yet heart-healthy recipes you can enjoy as part of your holiday feast. Fill up your table with dishes like Roasted Onion and Jack Cheese Polenta, Chili Roasted Sweet Potato Salad, and Crunchy Pumpkin Pie. Click here to order.

You can also find dozens of recipes on the Heart-Healthy Firefighter web site, like Deep Dish Apple Cranberry Pie, Spicy Apple-filled Squash, Turkey Stew, Homestyle Biscuits, Mock-Southern Sweet Potato Pie, Apple Crisp, and many others. Click here to access the recipe archive.

Remember, too, that there are lots of ways to continue exercising even as the weather gets cooler. From playing flag football to taking a fall or winter walk/hike, find ways to keep active during the holidays to help burn any excess calories you may consume. Maintaining an exercise routine may also make you feel better, improve your energy, sleep better, and decrease your stress level.

Click here for 6 easy tips on how to watch your waistline this feasting season. Also check out these tips for a heart-healthy Thanksgiving and take a look at this tip sheet for incorporating walking into your winter routine. Stress can impact your health during the holidays as well – click here for tips on how to manage your holiday stress. 

 

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