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Staying healthy during the holiday season

While the holidays can bring excitement and joy, they can also be a stressful time for many different reasons. Take time this holiday season to practice self-care. Self-care is different for everyone and it may take some effort to find a strategy that works for you. Whatever your holiday stressors are, the following tips can help you manage your physical and emotional health during the holiday season and all year long:


Eat Well

Eat Well

Move More

Move More

Be Well

Be Well

Eat Well  Learn More


Try to eat as healthy as you can. Enjoy your favorite treats - in moderation.

Here are some tips to help you eat well during the holiday season:

    Holiday Plate
  • Don’t skip meals: It will make you hungrier and less likely to choose healthy options the next time you eat.
  • Slow down: Eat slowly to avoid overeating. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain that you are full.
  • Plan your plate: when you’re filling up your plate, remember to:
    • Fill ½ of your plate with fruits and vegetables
    • Fill ¼ of your plate with lean protein
    • Fill ¼ of your plate with whole grains or starches


The Guide to Healthy Eating and Active Living in NYC has more tips on creating healthy eating habits and maintaining a healthy weight all year long.

Move More  Learn More


Try to keep up a regular exercise routine.

Here are some tips to help you move more during the holiday season:

    Family walking in the snow
  • Start a new tradition: Take a family walk after your holiday meal, or go ice skating with friends. 
  • Every moment counts: Take advantage of those small chunks of time – even 10 minutes of movement has health benefits. Try these seated exercises at home or on-the-go.
  • Make NYC your gym: Try a free Shape Up NYC class near you or find low-cost fitness activities in your area.

Be Well  Learn More


Taking care of everything but yourself? Take a few minutes for self-care.

    Man Meditating
  • Try a deep breathing exercise: 
    • Breathe in slowly, counting to five. Pause and hold your breath for a few seconds.
    • Breathe out slowly, counting to five.
    • Repeat until you feel more relaxed.

  • Try meditating:
    • Close your eyes and take slow, deep breaths
    • Imagine yourself in a calm, peaceful place.
    • When you feel more relaxed, open your eyes.

Get support if you need it:

If you feel overwhelmed, talk to a partner, family member, friend or health care provider*, or contact:


    EAP Logo

The New York City Employee Assistance Program (NYC EAP) offers free and confidential resources, support, and referrals to employees and their family members.

- Call the EAP at 212-306-7660
- Email the EAP at eap@olr.nyc.gov

    NYC Well

NYC WELL counselors are available 24/7 and can provide confidential support and referrals.

- Call 1-888-NYC-Well (1-888-692-9355)
- Text WELL to 65173
- Chat online at nyc.gov/nycwell


* If you do not have a health care provider, call the number on the back of your health insurance card or visit your health plan website to find one in your network.