Healthy holidays by color in Georgia

NOV 09, 2015
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The winter holidays are here once again — so give yourself the gift of good nutrition and mental health by using the hues of the holidays as your guide.


The color palette that helps make the season sparkle includes the traditional colors of red and green for Christmas; blue and white for Hanukah; red, green, and black for Kwanzaa; and silver, gold, yellow, red, and blue which are commonly associated with New Year’s.


Ricia Taylor, RD, a Kaiser Permanente Georgia registered dietitian and nutritionist, suggests incorporating the holiday color scheme into mealtimes. Do this by decorating your plate with more fruits and vegetables that are rich in color and nutrients that can help elevate your mood and help you feel more festive. Aim for at least 3 colors on your plate, she adds.


Red cranberries can dress up the table, she says, but as a meal item, they’re a great source of antioxidants and vitamin C. Nutrient-rich beets add color to a vegetable tray, while red kidney beans are rich in fiber.


“By incorporating more of these fruits and vegetables into your holiday meals, you can get the nutrients you need — and help avoid unwanted weight gain,” Taylor says. “That leaves a little less room for traditional dishes that are significantly less healthy.”


Lateefah Watford, MD, Kaiser Permanente Georgia’s chief of Behavioral Health, puts a mental health spin on the holiday color wheel. The season can be as stressful as it is joyous. She suggested using the color white as a reminder to stay clear about the reasons for the season and that the new year represents an opportunity to create a clean slate.


“Don’t overextend yourself,” Dr. Watford says. “Keep it simple.”


Healthy hues:

Black – Party lights out. Make sure you get enough sleep.

Blue – Add antioxidant-rich blueberries to the menu for an immune system boost.

Gold – Go for the gold by getting in some exercise. Savor the golden moments in life.

Green – Avoid overspending and post-holiday financial stress. Take a nature walk.

Red – Eat heart healthy. Enjoy the love and company of family and friends.

Silver – Life is filled with silver linings. Accentuate the positive.

Yellow – Slow down and soak up a little sun to help improve your mood and vitamin D levels.

White – Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of H2O.




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TOPICSGeorgiaHealthy holidays