DECEMBER: Holiday Healthy Living and Giving

November 30, 2017


Even the most dedicated healthy eaters are tempted during the holidays, and while most of us are still stuffed from Thanksgiving, December brings many more reasons to celebrate. Where there’s celebration, there is usually food, and lots of it! We want you to be mindful of your diet and exercise routine this holiday season. Whether your preference is sweet or savory, remember that tasty treats can be healthy, too!


Holiday Stress? Try Our Top 5 Tips for a Healthy Holiday Season!


Traveling for the holidays? Here are some healthy travel tips:

Start with a plan. Just like a roadmap, don’t get off track. Prepare to pack healthy snacks so you’re not tempted to grab a candy bar or grilled hot dog while at the gas station.

Pack water. Many people think drinking caffeinated beverages like sodas and coffee will help you stay awake while driving. Caffeine actually dehydrates your body which leads to a decrease in your energy level!

If you can’t pack it, find heart-healthy options on the road. If you can’t pack your own healthy sandwiches, plan to choose healthy options when you spot a restaurant at the top of the exit ramp. Sandwich shops have many healthy options – since there is no additional charge for veggie toppings, be sure to load up with spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes and other fiber-filled, vitamin packed vegetables.

Put your smartphone to work for you. And of course, there is an “app” for everything! If you have a smartphone, you can download apps like Restaurant Nutrition. It’s free and you will have over a hundred fast food restaurants at your fingertips to look up nutrition information instantly.

Stretch it out. Don’t forget to make a pit stop for stretching and exercise. There are several restaurants that offer an indoor play area. Let the kids jump around and climb while parents enjoy a quiet meal. And don’t park in the closest spot-park father away, take the steps instead of elevator, etc.

Keep calm and carry on. Peace and quiet are also musts to staying happy and healthy while traveling. Prepare games ahead of time. Travel with a deck of cards, a good book, splurge on some magazines, and bring a craft project. Make a scavenger hunt list ahead of time. Give each player a list of items to find before the trip is over.

Expect the unexpected. Expect a minor bump in the road every now and then, but enjoy your holiday trip using the simple suggestions listed above.

*Holiday cooking means lots of dishes to clean! Check out this video below on cleaning stubborn pots and pans.


Don’t let the temperature keep you from continuing your fitness routine indoors or out. While exercising in the cold has a lot of advantages like burning more calories and making you feel more awake, check out our cold weather fitness guide for tips on working out this winter.  


Giving back during the holidays:

The holidays are often thought of as a season for giving, and the gift of a donation can go incredibly far.

When you donate to the American Heart Association, you are joining us in the fight against our nation’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers – heart disease and stroke. Your donation will support such life-saving efforts as research, education, advocating for better health, improving patient care and reaching populations at risk.

Whether you want to honor a loved one with a memorial brick or participate in a volunteer event, there are many ways to give with the AHA. Learn more about how you can help.


Important Dates in December

  12/3 - International Day of Persons with Disabilities

  12/7 – Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

  12/21 – First day of winter

  12/24 – Christmas Eve

  12/25 – Christmas Day

  12/31 – New Year’s Eve

REGISTER TODAY for the International Stroke Conference 2018 in Los   Angeles, CA. Registration is now open until 5pm CT on January 5, 2018.  Visit the ISC 2018 Newsroom for more information and to complete the online registration process.