Feeling guilty over holiday indulgences? Don’t.

CBS4 This Morning

INDIANAPOLIS — The holidays are often filled with tons of food and scrumptious treats. But for those that indulge, it can often be followed by guilt and negative feelings of body image. But health experts say that doesn’t have to (and shouldn’t be) the case.

A recent survey from OnePoll on behalf of Herbalife found the average American expects to gain eight pounds this holiday season.  For some, that’s in addition to weight they’ve already gained during the pandemic. 

There’s no denying how important physical health is and a steady diet of unhealthy foods can lead to problems down the road. But according to registered dietitian nutritionist Kim Galeaz, that doesn’t mean you need to carry any guilt or shame about holiday indulgences. Galeaz says a healthy approach to what we eat is very important, but she adds your relationship with what you eat is also important.

“Negative food relationships — I think they are actually so much worse in my opinion as a dietitian than overindulging too many times in a week or a month. I think you really need to turn around and say we all overindulge, I overindulge. It’s ok. We can all learn to balance it out and say life is about eating those wonderful things that you like, and I’m going to do that. But I’m also going to eat my fruits and vegetables and I need to get some activity every day or most days of the week. So it’s about the balance.”

Galeaz says exercise and activity are also very important and adds being active for at least 10 minutes a day is a good benchmark. However, she stresses the importance of having a positive outlook on exercise is equally important.

“Don’t use exercise as punishment. Sure, during the holiday season I may add an additional 10 minutes to balance those calories, but it’s not a negative ‘oh I’m punishing myself because I’m too negative. It’s all I choose to add 10 minutes to balance those extra calories.”

She added, “So use exercise for all the things it does for your body and how you feel other than just your weight and as punishment for over eating. It helps you sleep better; it helps your blood pressure. Exercise does so much for you so, think of the positives.”

Galeaz adds that healthy habits coupled with positive mindsets is the key for success.

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