Nutrition Nuggets: Creating A Special Holiday Season In Challenging Times

This holiday season is going to look much different than any other year. The stress of 2020 and the uncertainty of 2021 is weighing heavily on us all. We may be grieving the loss of connection we usually have around the holiday season with friends and family, and if we sit too long in these feelings, it’s hard to imagine a joyous occasion.

Nutrition Nuggets usually provides information about food and nutrition. However, since a healthy diet isn’t the only way to live a healthy life, this month we will talk about another type of food – food for the soul.

Food for the soul can mean different things for every person. Although, it generally involves doing more of whatever brings you joy.

Some of the things you usually do may not be possible this season, but we can start exploring other food for our souls by reframing this holiday season as a gift. A gift of time together with your immediate family or cohort; a time to create new holiday traditions that in the past you didn’t have time for.

Here are a few food for the soul activities you can try with your family or cohort to bring joy to this holiday season:

  1. Instead of buying gifts for others, have a family baking day and deliver delicious goodies to your friends and family to enjoy.
  2. Take a walk together as a family on one of the many city pathways. Even if the weather is colder, bundle up and get outside for some fresh air.
  3. Find a frozen lake, shovel an area and skate with your family. Johnson Lake and Grotto Pond are two of our favourite spots. See a full list of places to skate near Calgary here. Make sure to scroll to the bottom to read about safety tips for wild ice skating.
  4. Try a new recipe for Christmas dinner or Christmas morning. It can be a family favourite that you haven’t made in a while or you can choose a new one. See this website for some delicious recipes:
  5. Practice gratitude. This could be as simple as asking everyone at dinner or bedtime what they are grateful for from the day. Or you can keep a gratitude journal and write down what you are grateful for. Practicing gratitude has consistently been associated with increased happiness in life.

The end of the year is a time to reflect, and the time to look forward to the year ahead. This has been a very challenging year for everyone. We hope you find some time this holiday season to connect with your family, get outside, and feed your soul.

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