Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

I will be taking a week off from PWN blog to spend time with my family. Thanks to everyone who has read my blog, shared it with friends, commented, sent me e-mails with questions… all of you have helped to make this experience fun and fulfilling for me.

I look forward to tackling some great topics in 2010, including cholesterol; MSG and the way it is hidden in certain foods; the importance of kitchen aesthetics; and how to approach feeding and eating with your kids!

Thanks again,

Christmas Countdown: 2 Days

Challenge: Get 8 hours of sleep.

With all the excitement, travel and catching-up with family, I tend to sleep less around the holidays. But the importance of sleep doesn’t go away just because there are other things going on. It helps with mood, energy, metabolism and overall health, so make a conscious effort to get plenty of sleep at least one night this week.

Plus, Santa doesn’t come when people are awake, right?

Christmas Countdown: 3 Days

Challenge: Get outside, and take your family with you.

I love being cooped up inside on a freezing cold winter day, with nothing to do but sip wine and hot chocolate around the fireplace, play games, and share good meals together. But every once in a while it’s nice to bundle up and get outside. Play football. Take the dog for a walk (I’ll be walking Jasper the family dog!). Run in a Holiday 5k (almost every city has one!). Build a snowman. Go sledding or skating. Walk through the neighborhood to show your kids all the Christmas lights.

Remember my Thanksgiving Day blog post about the relationship between exercise and enjoyment of food? Christmas is another time when it’s important to get outside and exercise. No need to abandon the fun in the process – just bring everyone out there with you! People will enjoy it, trust me.

Christmas Countdown: 4 Days

Challenge: Avoid “grazing” today

Remember, your body needs four full hours after a meal to metabolize it and dip into your fat stores and start using those up. When you graze throughout the day, your body is more likely to store fat than to burn fat. If you eat some protein and fat at each meal, you will be less likely to feel hungry after an hour or two. These take longer to metabolize. So add a little butter to your whole grain toast, dip your apples into almond butter (and sprinkle with cinnamon, yum!), enjoy a Christmas cookie after lunch, and then stay away for at least four hours!

Christmas Countdown: 5 Days

This will be a busy week for all of us: wrapping up things at work, traveling, shopping and celebrating. I am going to keep the blogs short this week, with just one small challenge each day. My hope is that this will help you stay mindful of your health in a time when most people are not. Good Luck!

Challenge: Include a veggie in your breakfast to help ensure you get all your veggies today.

Ways to do it:

Add tomatoes, kale, spinach, onions, mushrooms, etc to your eggs.

Add frozen or fresh veggies to your smoothie.

Eat a few carrot sticks with your cup of coffee and piece of toast.

Boil a sweet potato, mash it and mix it into the pancake batter for you and your kids!