Dr. Phil Shares: Staying Keto over the Holidays

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but for those following a diet, the holidays may stir up stress and anxiety around food. The ketogenic diet is not the most “social” diet, but there are ways to stick to it, even in the most daunting of times, such as holiday celebrations.

If you can’t eat keto, at least aim for low-carb

Your holiday party may not be stocked full of keto-friendly foods, but there is a high probability that you can nibble on some low-carb options. The cheese platter is, more often than not, a pretty safe bet for cheese (of course!), but also for other low-carb foods such as nuts and meats. Just stay clear of candy-coated nuts, dried fruits, and cured meats you suspect may have added sugar!

Another low-carb holiday party go-to is the veggie platter. Lucky for you, this usually gets the least attention by guests, thereby giving you full access to it. Stick to the low-carb vegetables options such as broccoli, cauliflower, celery, and cucumber. If your event is serving dinner, opt for the meats or any salads (without sugar-loaded dressings), and low-carb vegetables. Things to stay away from are the mashed potatoes, any bread/pastry-like foods, sauces, and, of course, the sweets. Sticking with low-carb as opposed to ditching the diet completely will make transitioning back into ketosis much easier.

Prepare for success and give yourself options

If you are uncomfortable not knowing what food options will be available at your holiday gathering, prepare some food in advance. Better yet, prepare a keto-friendly dish to share with everyone! Take a high-fat dip to pair with that veggie platter and a salad dressing you can pour on any dry salads to avoid sugary dressings. You can also pack some snacks such as high-fat nuts (e.g. macadamia nuts) to graze on throughout the evening. Additionally, medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil is a great tool for ketogenic living. Fill a small jar with MCT oil to take with you and use on any dish or in beverages. MCTs are highly ketogenic and have even been shown to increase ketone production without carbohydrate restriction.1

The popularity of the ketogenic diet has made it simple to find recipes that anyone can enjoy. Consider making a ketogenic dessert to bring and share so you can “indulge” too, while also preventing you from caving into the temptations of sugar-laden treats.

Stay positive and remember your “why”

It can be difficult to gain the support of those around you when your dietary choices are perceived as something as radical as a ketogenic diet may seem to some. You may even be tempted to ditch the diet for the sake of your peers or those family members who just won’t back down from having you try “just one bite.” Be prepared to explain to others what the ketogenic diet is and why you follow it. Remember that there is no one-size-fits-all diet, and it is perfectly fine to have different views from others. Just stay true to yourself, remember your “why,” and stay positive, because there is nothing worse than engaging in a debate over food choices!

Tips for alcohol

Alcohol isn’t generally conducive to living a ketogenic lifestyle, and if you have no problem abstaining from it completely, that is your best option. If having a drink in your hand makes you feel more comfortable in a crowd, take club soda and sliced lemon with you; this will help you feel less segregated. With all this said, celebrations may be times when you can make exceptions (within reason). There are ways to enjoy a drink or two and stick to your goals; you just have to know what to look out for. For wines, opt for the driest you can find, white or red, and avoid sweet wines such as rosé. Most liquors are acceptable on their own or enjoyed with club soda or sugar-free beverages. Beers typically contain more carbohydrates, and they should probably be limited to one. If nutrition labels are available, check to see what the lowest-carbohydrate beer options are. Coolers and ciders are to be avoided due to their high sugar content.

Be kind to yourself and don’t overthink it

If you take into consideration all of the recommendations above, there is no reason to be stressed or anxious about your diet as you enter into the holidays. You are following a ketogenic diet to improve your health, right? Well, being kind to yourself is part of healthy living, and sometimes that means accepting that your diet can’t always be perfect. Also, keep in mind that you can always jump right back into the swing of things; a few days of indulging does not mean you have “failed.” There is more to health than simply what you put in your mouth, so do the best you can, be prepared, but most importantly, don’t get down on yourself if things don’t go as planned. Instead of focusing on your food options, focus on enjoying your time with loved ones over this holiday season.

As we said, the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, and your diet shouldn’t change that for you.

General Wellness, Ketogenic

Shared by Dr. Phil McAllister @ Forward Health Guelph

Resources:

  1. McCarty MF et al. Lauric acid-rich medium-chain triglycerides can substitute for other oils in cooking applications and may have limited pathogenicity. Open Heart. 2016;3(2):e000467.

Dr. Phil Shares: 10 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

10 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Do you find that the scale moves up a few pounds during this time of the year? During summertime, we’re focused on our bodies, given we know we’ll be wearing the revealing clothing that goes with the season. But when fall and winter come around, that mindset falls away like autumn leaves. Maybe it’s our primitive instinct to bulk up when the weather gets colder; it probably also has a lot to do with our busy holiday shopping and social schedules interfering with our regular workouts, and with all the tasty holiday treats lying in wait to tempt us everywhere we turn, regardless. But don’t let the layers of clothing become layers of fat. These tips can help you avoid holiday weight gain this season.

Avoid Holiday Weight Gain With These 10 Simple Tips

Staying healthy and fit during the holidays isn’t impossible. You just need the right tools! With convenient workouts you can do at home on Beachbody On Demand, and a craving-crushing drink like Shakeology, it will be easier than ever to end the year on a healthy high note.

1. Travel smart

Many people find themselves traveling during the holiday season, but that’s not an excuse to eat unhealthily and avoid exercise. Plan your meals in advance, and pack snacks when you are either on the road or in the air. Good travel snacks can include nuts or dried fruit. To help you be a happier traveler, get a good night sleep before you leave to increase your mood and alertness. Eating a heavy meal before traveling can make you sleepy, so eat a small, low-fat meal before you head out the door.

2. Get enough sleep

Try to keep a regular sleep schedule and get a full night’s rest as often as you can. If you fail to get a good night sleep, it can make you grumpy the next day and make it harder to focus on your healthy goals. No one wants to travel with a grouchy person, so do everyone a favor and get some shut eye. Sleeping well can also help you reduce your calorie consumption, because it inhibits the release of the appetite-stimulating hormone ghrelin while promoting the release of leptin, another hormone that limits hunger. And keeping that hunger in check is a good idea when you find yourself surrounded by holiday goodies. Check out these natural sleep remedies to help you get some shut-eye.

3. Drink enough water

You’ve probably heard it before, but we’ll say it again: drink water! During the busy holiday season it can be easy to forget to fill up enough cups with H2O, but it can do wonders with keeping you healthy. It helps regulate your body temperature, helps with the digestion of food, and it can help you limit your caloric intake. How? Try drinking a glass of water before each meal, and you’ll likely feel more satisfied on less food because your stomach already has some liquid in there. And if you alternate alcoholic drinks with a glass of water, you’ll slow down your consumption of high-calorie beverages. If you don’t think a glass of plain old H2O is appetizing enough, here are 10 tasty ways to add flavor to your water.

4. Approach cocktails with caution

We’re not telling you to avoid alcohol completely – wine is allowed in Portion Fix after all! But do pace yourself by having at least one glass of water in between each drink (see tip #3). Remember that one gram of alcohol contains seven calories, and yet it yields virtually no energy or health benefits. Calories from alcohol can add up quickly, so be mindful of how much you are drinking. Also, drinking may reduce inhibitions at the dessert buffet, which can lead to a few too many sugar cookies. If you do indulge in eggnog, which is super-high in calories in its traditional form, try this lighter version that clocks in under 150 calories.

5. Get an accountability partner

The holidays are filled with temptation, and it’s your job to stop it in its tracks. But…that can be really tough to do on your own. If you need some assistance in fighting the temptation of cookies and cocktails and candies (oh my!), don’t be afraid to ask for help. An accountability partner can help you stick to your goals when your willpower gets a little shaky. Tell a family member that you’re trying to eat healthier, so they can give you a gentle reminder when you’re eyeing that second slice of cake. Or, get a group of friends and do morning workouts together. You’ll probably find that power in numbers is a key part in avoiding holiday weight gain. And if you can’t confide in someone in person, then try reaching out to a Team Beachbody Coach, who can help you stay on track even from afar.

6. Use screen time wisely

Who says the TV can only be used to watch classic holiday movies and rivalry sports games? Take over the screen for a few minutes and turn on one of your favorite Beachbody On Demand workouts. Don’t worry, you won’t have to be using precious TV time for hours at a time, there are plenty of workout that are less than 30 minutes! You can even get the whole family involved with the kid-friendly Double Time program, or the fun dance routines in Country Heat. And you don’t have to hog the TV. You can also cue up Beachbody On Demand on your computer, tablet, or phone. And when you you do decide to cozy up for a made-for-TV holiday film, encourage your family to get up in between commercials for some jumping jacks or push-ups. Make it a competition to see who can do the most during the break and watch the sibling rivalry do some good for once.

7. Make recipes healthier

Most recipes can be made healthier without compromising the recipe. Just check out how Autumn and Bobby Calabrese do it on FIXATE, Beachbody’s healthy cooking show. With a few substitutions, you can limit unnecessary salt, sugar, and fat in some of your favorite holiday recipes…and we doubt that your guests will notice. Here are some of our personal favorite holiday recipes made healthier, like Gingerbread Protein Pancakes and Herb-Crusted Beef Tenderloin.

8. Avoid serving food family-style

When food is placed right on the dining table, it’s much easier to grab a second helping. So make it harder: Keep the extra food away from the dining room. If you leave it in the kitchen, out of sight, it forces everyone to think about getting up to grab another helping. Here’s a tip: If you still feel hungry after your first plate, wait for 15 minutes and drink a full glass of water, then decide whether you want more food.

9. Eat smaller amounts more often

Instead of starving yourself all day so you can overindulge in that one, giant meal, have smaller meals throughout the day. At family holiday gatherings in particular, it’s asking too much to resist the lavish aromas of the kitchen, so being mindful of your portion sizes is important. You can still enjoy all your family-favorite recipes – just enjoy them in moderation. You’ll likely feel much better at the end of the meal that way.

10. Stay active

Whether you cue up a workout on Beachbody On Demand or gather up the troops for a walk around the block, regular exercise can help with so many of the challenges you face during the holiday season. It can help you cope with the stress of traveling by releasing endorphins that help boost your mood and energy. At the airport, if you have time, walk beside those moving sidewalks instead of standing and letting them carry you to your terminal. If you’re traveling by car, take frequent breaks, get out of the car, walk around, and get some fresh air. If you’re staying home for the holidays, get the family involved! Depending on the climate, go ice skating, hiking, sledding, skiing, biking, or walk the dog. And go for a walk together after your big meal—it’ll help you all digest better.

Wrapping Up

We’re not asking you to deprive yourself of any holiday cheer. Just be aware of your body and the temptations and pitfalls it faces this season. Because the holidays have a way of testing your self-control, it’s a good idea to have a plan in place well in advance for dealing with them. That way, you’ll have a better chance of avoiding holiday weight gain and remaining on your regular regimen of exercise and dieting. You can even make it your New Year’s resolution to keep a healthy lifestyle and continue working toward your goals.

Shared By Dr. Phil McAllister @ Forward Health Guelph

Dr. Phil Shares: 31 Ways To Stay Fit During The Holidays

 

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Don’t wait for January to get in shape. Starting building muscle, burning fat, and checking off resolutions right now with our month-long guide for beating the holiday bulge and sculpting the body you’ve always wanted. Check back every day for a new tip!

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Day 30: Stay Still for a Six Pack
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Top 5 Tips to Keep You Motivated and Fit Through the Holiday Season

Top 5 Tips to Keep You Motivated and Fit Through the Holiday Season

Here are their top five tips to stay motivated and fit during the most tempting time of the year:

1) Buddy Up for the Holidays
They’re here! Your entire family, all in one place for the holidays. Or maybe it’s your good friends visiting from out of town. Either way, our Master Trainers agree it’s the perfect opportunity to pick a holiday workout buddy, or even a workout group. Hey, the more, the merrier. “Grab a family member(s) or friend(s) who will be your holiday buddy—decide to maintain, not gain during the holiday season by doing workouts together, trying new fitness classes on your holiday days off,” says Jessie Perry.

Lana Holt says it’s up to you to take the lead and have fun with it. “Make fitness a family affair. (Take a) family hike or bike ride or family challenge! Who can do more burpees?” And if friends and family aren’t up to holiday workouts, Sarah Remacle recommends an easy alternative. “Find an accountability partner through the holidays to commit to your favorite group fitness classes!”

2) Keep Your Routine…Routine!
You have a long list of places to go, presents to buy, and people to see. So maybe you don’t have time to work out today. Tomorrow will work, right? Wrong. “Make sure your workouts are still scheduled. Holidays don’t mean a holiday from working out,” says Matthew Taub. Claudia Rose Elfreich offers this simple, effective advice: “Plan, plan, plan. Stick to routines!” And Ron McDonald Jr. says to treat your meal routine like any other day. “Eat all your normal pre-family function meals as you routinely do…Have your normal breakfast, Shakeology, lunch, and in-between meals.”

For many people, the holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, so be sure to maintain a healthy balance to keep it that way. “It’s ok to say ‘no,’” says Teresa Seymour. “Stress and racing from place to place can leave you exhausted, overwhelmed, and out of sync with your healthy routines.”

3) Retreat From Treats
For health enthusiasts and fitness aficionados, the holidays often present a predicament for their palate. They want to eat the tasty treats, but don’t want the “benefits” they provide (a.k.a., calories, fat, sugars, you name it). Master Trainers have been there and done that, so here’s what they do now. “Bring food you know you can eat to parties! There are a lot of clean recipes out there!” says April Adorno. That’s what Heather Godfrey does. “I make the healthy version of my favorite treats and bring those to parties with me.”

They agree that you don’t need to completely ditch the dessert; you can simply exercise portion control, à la 21 Day Fix. “Don’t deny holiday treats BUT have a small portion and of course, be consistent in working out,” says Michelle Olsen. Adds Stephanie Annas Johnson: “Moderation in everything. One Christmas cookie won’t derail me, but 10 will.”

4) Plan Short Workouts
With so much happening during the holidays, it’s easy to commit to everything but your workout. To compromise, say our Master Trainers, commit to short workouts. “Tabata or HIIT workouts are great for getting your workout in with limited time,” says Philicia Moll. Felicia Laba Taub focuses on “efficient routines that are intense and take less time.” And if you have it, she suggests “30-45 minutes on Beachbody On Demand.” Morning workouts. 30-minute workouts. Julie Voris says to take your pick during the holidays, but quickly adds: “Fitness is not negotiable.”

5) Eat Before Your Big Event
Ahh, holiday delicacies. Turkey with all the trimmings. Dessert. How about another cup of eggnog? It feels like the calories are adding up just thinking about it. Our Master Trainers all agree on one strategy that works: Eat before dinners and parties. Missy Cornish likes to “eat something healthy with a large glass of water before heading out to an event.” Mandy Bear opts for Shakeology before attending gatherings. “I show up pretty full and therefore don’t feel the need to have a full plate.” Katie Hake takes it one step further. “Spoil your dinner! Fill up on veggies and fruit before dinner/the party and bring your own healthy dish,” she says. “Remember, the holidays are more about spending quality time with the ones you love.”

And Here’s One Bonus Tip!
Like it or not, we all do it. Holiday shopping. So Master Trainer Kam Niskach suggests turning it into your own form of exercise, but offers some advice to help keep your energy level high. “Holiday shopping is cardio!” she says. “Shopping on an empty stomach will just slow you down and pack on the pounds. Pack your purse with healthy snacks like almonds, an apple, and a shake packet.”

Shared by Dr. Phil McAllister @ Forward Health

Thanks Beachbody.com

How To Carve A Turkey Like A Professional Chef Over The Holiday Season

Found a great way to become the professional turkey carver/slicer and presentation aficionado at our family gatherings overt the years, and wanted to share the tips that have been very helpful as we come into the Holiday Season.

Shared by Dr. Phil McAllister @Forward Health and hopefully this gift of knowledge can be enjoyed for you as it has for our family.

No time to take a crash course on how to carve a turkey before the big day? No worries! In this episode of Culinary Intelligence from the CIA, Chef Brendan Walsh of The Culinary Institute of America gives you step-by-step instructions for not only how to carve a turkey, but also how to slice and arrange it on a platter for the perfect presentation on your holiday table.