Special Report: Making it through the holidays


KIMT News 3 – The holiday season is getting into full swing, a time for families and friends to come together. However, it can also bring months of stress and anxiety. We took a look at some issues you can tackle this holiday season to make sure it’s jolly.

When the calendar flips over to November it means pumpkin pie, ham, turkey, stuffing, everything your taste buds desire but your body will surely hate. We talked to a registered dietitian who gives us the bad news on our meals. “The average holiday meal has over 3,000 calories which is a lot which usually we eat until we are sick which is not so good for our health overall,” Sara Kelly with Hy-Vee says. She suggests giving yourself an early gift and cutting some of the calories out.

One way you can do that is by buying riced cauliflower which Kelly says is a great alternative for mashed potatoes. Also, instead of having traditional stuffing, give wild rice stuffing a chance, it’s packed with vitamins. And finally, you can still experience eggnog but almond based eggnog has fewer calories. Just remember it’s about control. “I think it’s choosing what you indulge in, what are some of your favorite things and having those but taking away one serving and not going back for seconds,” Kelly adds.

We are not just talking about our waistlines-we are also taking a look at the bottom line. What can you do to save money this holiday season. “I think with anything wise advice is to plan ahead and if they haven’t started yet they should now.” Peter Melsness with Superior Financial says. Just like Santa would, he suggests making a list and maybe taking it easier this year. “It could be talking to family about gift exchanges so that you are not buying for every niece or nephew in the family,” he adds. Also you could go another route, “some people are crafty, handy, provide services provide crafts or whatever might be an excellent way to go about it,” he says. The overall message though is to not overspend, “and if they don’t plan for it it can be something that’s hard to get out of,” Melsness says.

Finally, let’s take a look at how you can stay mentally healthy this season. When you head into this time of the year you have an idea on how everything should go, and most of the time it doesn’t work out that way. “I just think of all these amazing things I can make or do and of course I never fulfill a quarter of those things,” Executive Director of NAMI Southeast Minnesota Courtney Lawson tells us. Of course all of this can lead to stress and anxiety during the holidays, but there are ways to battle it. One is getting enough sleep since there is a lot of social activities going on and also not drinking in excess.

Lawson also suggests managing your expectations of the season and if you do feel overwhelmed make sure you get help. These are just a few tips to having a more restful and relaxed season, which could be the perfect present to yourself.

Click here for NAMI.


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