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How to Manage Your Weight and Diabetes Over the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us! Cooking, family gatherings, parties, and shopping can make it hard to stay on track with your diabetes or weight loss treatment plan. While managing your diabetes and your weight – over this festive time of year can be tricky, there are steps you can take to keep your health in tip-top shape, while enjoying yourself at the same time.

Eat well and enjoy

  • Think about how you’ll use your carbohydrate choices to allow for special treats. Remember, one carb choice = 15 grams of carb

  • Eat a small, low carb snack, such as raw vegetables or 2 tablespoons of nuts, before going to a party. This will curb your appetite and can help prevent overeating.

  • Use your hand – aim to have at least 2 fists size of veggies, a palm size of lean protein such as turkey, chicken or lean meat, and a fist size of a whole grain carb, such as brown rice or whole grain pasta.

  • Cut back on how much fat and sugar you use in your recipes by one third to one half.

  • Increase activities and have fun

  • Try at least 10-20 mins walk after each meal especially the big holiday meal.

  • Try something new and fun, such as ice-skating or take a dance class.

  • Take a few extra laps around the mall or walk around the block to look at holiday lights.

  • Track how many steps you achieve each day, aim at an average of 8000 a day.

Manage stress and relax

  • Plan out your shopping, cooking and party schedule ahead of time.

  • Set aside quiet time for yourself each day to unwind. Treat yourself to a massage or join a yoga class.

  • Limit yourself to no more than one or two servings of alcohol. 12 oz can of beer or 5 oz wine is a serving. Too much alcohol will ruin your party fun and weight loss plan.

  • Say “no” to requests or events that you don’t want to attend.

Keep on checking:

  • Keep weighing yourself once a week. Goal is to maintain during the holidays. When you see your weigh is trending up, try your best to lose it before it’s accumulate!

  • For those who are living with Diabetes, monitor your blood glucose by checking more than usual and recording your results.

  • Know your blood glucose targets – 80-130 mg/dL before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals are targets for most people with diabetes. Call your healthcare team if your results are too high or low and you’re not sure what to do.

Interested in learning about weight goal and nutrition needs? Schedule a free body weight and % body fat analysis with Our Smart Eater Dietitians at 626-283-5128 or email to

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