Friday, 16 December 2011

Avoiding the gluttony of Christmas

With Christmas comes rich foods, big meals and lots of edible treats! We tell ourselves it's Christmas so it's ok to indulge but after the event itself we soon start to wish we hadn't eaten quite so much.... You can still enjoy festive food and treats but there are ways to keep your diet a little more balanced in the process. Here are some suggestions to avoid the gluttony of Christmas:

Meal plan: not just your Christmas day main meal but also plan what you're going to have on Christmas Eve and Boxing day for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That way you can choose some lighter, healthier meals around the indulgent ones.

Make a shopping list: along with the meal planning, making a list of food you need to buy will help avoid impulse unhealthy food purchases and will encourage you to think about what you will be consuming over the holidays. Just make sure you stick to it and don't get tempted by special offers on foods you don't need!

Watch your portion sizes: on the occasions you are having a particularly rich meal, you can still enjoy a taste of everything but keep your portions small so you don't stuff yourself. You don't need a large amount of something to enjoy it. Use a smaller plate, refrain from second helpings or use smaller serving spoons to help control the amount you eat.

Drink water: keep drinking lots of water each day and a glass before each meal. It will keep you hydrated and means you're not filling your body with food and alcohol alone.Sometimes we eat when really we're thirsty and are not drinking enough water, so make a conscious effort to drink a glass every couple of hours.

Have one or two fast / detox / healthy eating days: put a day in the diary just before Christmas and another one a couple of days after to do a fast, a detox or just to eat extra healthily. It'll give your body a break from the rich foods and make you feel better for eating less or very healthily. You can also enjoy your treats with a little less guilt!

Exercise: it might be cold outside but you can still exercise over the festive period. Wrap up warm and go for a brisk walk, do some simple exercises indoors, some vigorous dancing in the living room....whatever it is will make you feel good and stop you languishing on the sofa grazing.

Are you good about what you eat over the Christmas period or do you tend to stuff yourself and regret it later? Do you have any additonal tips to add to the list above?
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