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Healthy Habits During
the Holidays

If you dread the holiday season because every year you are tempted to over-indulge on foods and beverages, you aren’t alone! With nearly two-thirds of American adults overweight or obese, the holiday celebrations can be little to cheer about. What may seem like a harmless splurge at a holiday party can easily lead to poor eating habits all year. This is the story of how the Beattie family at Langley AFB have taken control of the food they eat.

Tis the season to watch what you consume!

Holiday time can trigger a spiral that quickly gets out-of-control – a little too much, a little too often. These practical tips will help you strike a healthy balance between maintaining a healthy diet and joining in the holiday festivities.
  • Take a ‘safety’ dish to holiday parties (veggie tray with hummus is a great choice)
  • Continue your exercise regime (30 minutes each day)
  • Don’t attend parties hungry (eat healthy snacks throughout the day to help prevent
  • Curb your alcohol intake (alcohol is fattening too – opt for lower-calorie beverages
     when possible)

Start new traditions!
Meet our featured FitFamily – MAJ Steve and MAJ Tracy Beattie, along with identical twin daughters Amelia and Alaina, 6. Stationed at Langley AFB, the Beattie family actually longs for the holidays – days off mean more outdoor time. Newport News Park sports bike trails and is a great venue for camping. Fortunately for them, they have mild weather that allows camping time well into the year. This year they are looking forward to introducing the girls to snow skiing and ice skating – new activities they hope become new traditions.

Take control of the food you eat!
Not long ago while on a TDY trip, Steve picked up a book at the airport “Food Is Not Your Enemy” and from that reading on they decided it was time to rid their family of processed foods and take control of their own health. From the book, they discovered Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and have been active members ever since. Tracy commented “Getting away from processed foods with no other changes in my daily regime resulted in a 15 pound loss in the first month!” “It does take more thought and planning to prepare meals using fresh produce, but the outcome is more than worth it”, she said.

About CSA
Now it may sound cliché, but being a good neighbor can actually improve your health! The concept is to help each other and Community Supported Agriculture has become a popular way to do just that. Supporting local farmers in turn rewards consumers with ultra-fresh, unprocessed food. Ever since they Googled “CSA” to subscribe to a local chapter, Steve, Tracy and the girls look forward to their weekly “box” with the same delight as when receiving a gift!

Holiday eating!
When asked what they found to be the most difficult challenge during the holidays, Steve promptly replied “Cooking, but not eating holiday goodies – especially chocolates”. Cooking at the Beattie home is shared by all and they especially love to bake all the traditional holiday sweets. But now, rather than consume all they bake, they’ve made it a tradition to practice yet another form of “being a good neighbor” and share small portions with all neighbors. Tracy also takes advantage of their cooking passion by incorporating math exercises for the girls – changing measurements and exchanging ingredients.

Beattie Healthy Living Advice
  • Try new family activities – correspond your activity with the weather
  • Take the time to learn about the foods you eat
  • Try to remember how badly you feel when you over-indulge (eating and drinking)
  • Try new recipes from FitFamily, Healthy Living, Biggest Loser, Cooking Light and
    Weight Watcher
  • Know where the foods you eat come from
  • Work out in front of your children – be a good role model for exercise
  • Try new foods


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