We are in the festive, year-end season, and whether you’ve chosen to participate in Thanksgiving or opted for Friendsgiving, I’m sure the day will involve giving thanks, giving back, family gathering, fun, and feasting.

I know. Sometimes family can make you lose your appetite or make you want to eat everything on the table. And yes, sometimes your desire to eat everything on the table has only to do with the fact that the food is too darn good to resist. Whatever the case, and regardless of if you’re having fun or having a fit, you don’t want to eat and then end up feeling like you can float off into the crisp evening air.

Here are 5 tips to help you eat with ease during the holiday

Be Present

You are with your family. Be present. Center and ground yourself in that family space. Any forms of anxiety or stress will lead to an increase of adrenaline in the body, which will divert much-needed glucose from the digestive system to the arms and legs for fight and flight response. You want your digestive system functioning optimally. So be in your family space, and if needed, get rid of any old, resentful, vengeful feelings you might be holding on to. It’s a new day with new possibilities. Make it count.

Say a Prayer

Cultivate a habit of gratefulness through prayer. Whether you’re religious or not, prayer is a powerful way to acknowledge your blessings and express your hopes and dreams. Say a prayer before your meal. Acknowledge the blessing of having family, friends, and sustenance. Say a prayer for those who are not as fortunate and are unable to enjoy a meal of any kind with their family and friends, and last but not least, say a prayer for yourself, that you will continue to be blessed and be a blessing to all those you come in contact with.

Eat slowly

Enjoy your sustenance. Respect your body’s hunger and satisfaction. Relish every single morsel, and be attentive to the taste and textures of your meal.  Also, take your time, and chew. Chewing slowly can also help you eat less. It reduces your portion sizes, which can ultimately help you lose weight or put the breaks on weight gain. The last thing you want is to feel full, gassy or bloated before you even had four bites of your food. Chewing is the first stage of the digestive process, which prepares the food for further and seamless digestion in the stomach and small intestines. You want to feel satiated not stuffed.

Put your eating utensils down

It’s always a good practice to put your utensils down when you’re not eating. This helps you resist the urge to constantly put food into your mouth when there is no need to. With the utensils down, you’ll be able to focus on chewing your food, while savoring its delight. Pick up the utensils again after you’ve swallowed.

Take a walk

There’s an old Chinese saying, “one hundred steps taken after dinner, can cause you to live to 99 years old.” Taking a slow, mild walk after eating will help to increase the digestion process. It doesn’t have to be miles long. A 5 to 10-minute walk will do the deed beautifully.

Wishing you all a wonderful holiday with your family and friends. Eat, drink and be merry! And Take Great Care of You!

Dixie Lincoln- Nichols is a wife, mama, science educator, author, certified health coach and entrepreneur. Her work has been featured in media outlets like, Redbook, Natural Health, Instyle, Working Woman, Huffington Post, Essence Online, Tampa Tribune and more. She is currently the Chief Self-care Connoisseur and founder of I. O. Beauty Market, where she curates products that are free of toxic, harmful ingredients.

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