Staying Healthy this Silly Season
As Christmas creeps up on us and we focus our energies on endless shopping, Christmas card writing, parties and family get-togethers, healthy eating and exercise regimes often are forgotten. Even those who are health conscious for the rest of the year tend to let it slide in the festivities of December. But, come January this feeling of celebration fades and is replaced by regret as the over-indulgence HAS made a difference.
So is it possible to stay healthy this silly season?
Believe it or not, the answer is yes! It is possible to be a little bit silly, without packing on the kilos, simply by making smarter choices. Here are our top 5 tips to remember this season:
1. Beat the Bulge with Low Cal Beverages
Alcohol is packed with calories. The worst offenders are full strength beer, cocktails (especially those deliciously creamy ones) and spirits mixed with soft drink. Wine is also high on the list, and that refreshing cider you may enjoy is loaded with sugar.
This does not mean saying no to all drinks this Christmas, but choosing lower calorie options can certainly make a difference to your New Year waistline. The best option is to choose a spirit, mix it with soda water and add in fresh lemon or lime wedges for flavour. The soda will keep you hydrated, and help prevent a hangover.
2. Simple Swaps
There’s nothing like fresh seafood, fruit and salad on a hot summer’s day. So why not keep these yummy foods on the Christmas menu? Swapping fried, oily seafood for fresh prawns or fish, and chips and chocolates for cherries and peaches can make a huge impact to how many calories you will consume on Christmas day.
To burn off those calories you do have, why not swap laying on the couch in a food coma at the end of the day for a game of backyard cricket?
3. Select Carefully
When food is offered freely at an event, it is easy to lose track of just how much you are eating. To prevent going overboard, try to avoid arriving hungry and grabbing the first thing that comes along. How about perusing your options first, then selecting the few you prefer?
Also avoid standing near the food table. When it is right in front of you, you are much more likely to keep snacking away.
4. Enjoy each Bite!
Eating healthily is not all about cutting calories. It is ok to not be perfect all the time, and enjoying treats in moderation can prevent cravings and binging. If you tell yourself you aren’t allowed something, don’t you want it even more? So you are allowed some Christmas pudding, or one of those creamy cocktails. But, how much more will you enjoy it if you take small, careful mouthfuls, and really pay attention to how it tastes? Take your time with it, savouring every bite. It takes 15-20 minutes to start to feel full, so eating slowly can ultimately limit your total food intake.
5. Party for the People
Christmas, parties and holidays are about celebrating with friends, loved ones and colleagues, not about the food. Staying away from the snack table and mingling with the crowd will not only mean you avoid over-indulgence, you will also have a much better time!
Start the New Year ahead of the game, and with no regrets. Merry Christmas!