How do we survive, THRIVE to stay healthy during the holidays?

With all the upcoming holiday parties and social gatherings this time of year, it’s easy to get off track and make poor choices that lead to regret. But I’ve got great news for you. It doesn’t have to be all about poor food choices or regrets.

I went to an event last week, called “Thriving during the holiday season” at Sun Belly Cafe. Below you can see some of the appetizers offered.

The ladies that presented this event are wonderful and each have their own area of expertise and a passion for helping people feel their best. Their mission is to inspire healthy living. I learned so much at this event and I’m happy to share some of these things with you.


  • Look through the food before serving yourself, that way you can make better choices and pick some healthy, yet tasty items.
  • When you don’t want liquor choose light options (even non-alcoholic ones). You can take a sparkling water, put it in a wine glass and add a few berries and wa-la you’ve got yourself a mocktail. Cranberry juice mixed with LaCroix is also a good alternative. A light cocktail option can be: cranberry juice, pineapple juice and vodka.- Just saying.
  • When shopping for a potluck or gathering don’t go shopping hungry or hangry for that matter, shopping hungry not only makes you choose bad options but you tend to over spend.
  • Color your plate: choose PROTEIN, HEALTHY FATS, and SMALL CARB, (if any at all).
  • Also when you are invited to a gathering where you have to bring a dish, fix something healthy that you know you can partake of for sure.

ABOUT the appetizers (photos below) served at Sun Belly Cafe

  • Butternut squash medallions with Arugula Pesto
  • Cucumber slices with roasted red peppers and almond (blended)  
  • Carrot and ginger soup
  • Cold curry lentil salad
  • Eggplant & Feta Cheese bites


The event was A SUCCESS! I learned that not only do we have the ability and power to control what we eat, but that healthy food can also taste REALLY REALLY delicious! Also I learned that its easy to take a healthy food option to a gathering, and that while we can have fun at 1 evening function or holiday party, the very next day we can get back on track with zero guilt! 

ABOUT the ladies that hosted the event

1) Toni Suchka– Certified Personal trainer, group fitness instructor and Weight management specialist. Email: website: and Facebook handle is: Strength Healing Fitness

2) Chris DeHollander– certified Holistic Health Coach and owner of Nourish2live- her mission is to help women feel their best so they can live their lives to the fullest. Email: Facebook handle is: ChrisDeHollanderHealthCoaching

3) Deborah White– Certified yoga instructor, nutrition coach and owner of Sun Belly Cafe. Email: website: and Facebook handle is: Sun Belly Café

4) Valerie Slade– Wellness coach specializing in Celiac disease and gut health issues. Email:

5) Hunter Cardinal– Has personal experience and insight on emotional eating and finds it a privilege to encourage and guide others in their daily journey towards a healthy view of food. Email:


You may email these ladies for more helpful tips and  information. The Sun Belly Cafe is located at: 1409 West Blue Ridge Drive Greenville SC 29611

Until next time! I hope you enjoyed this blog and check back with us frequently to see what’s happening in South Carolina. I enjoy venturing out and finding new events and then bringing you the experience! Hopefully you will join us in upcoming events. Thank you for visiting www.insouthmagazine and for doing life with me!  Please share this link.

Happy Holidays and Healthy choices,

Michelle Kirby, your friendly lifestyle blogger



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