How to Stay Healthy Over the Christmas period
21 December 2016
If you have picked up various healthy habits that you are eager to stick to, you might think that you’ll be in for a struggle this festive period.
After all, you will probably be offered lots of food that’s pretty lacking in nutritional value. However, staying healthy during Christmas can actually, to a large extent, be a case of “easy once you know how”, as the following advice will make clearer.
Start the day with porridge!
In this article, we are going to provide a lot of tips from Kerry Torrens, BBC Good Food magazine’s nutritional therapist. For breakfast, she advises tucking into a bowl of porridge topped with cranberries and cinnamon. The porridge will stabilise your blood sugar levels and so help prevent the onset of hunger as the day goes on.
Get enough water into you
On a day that you know is going to include a big night out, aim to drink 6-8 glasses of water – and the same number the following day, too. Kerry says that, at such times, keeping up your fluid intake is crucial due to the diuretic effects that alcohol can bring.
Have a sensible snack before a party
Attend a party hungry and you could find those canapés too hard to resist! Therefore, it could be a good idea to have a carefully chosen snack just beforehand. Kerry cites one of her own favourites as a small pot of plain yogurt with a sliced banana. The yogurt’s protein will slow your stomach emptying, while the banana’s potassium will assist in balancing a rise in your salt intake.
Distance yourself from the buffet table
When you’re first at that table, put salad and vegetables on one half of your plate and protein-based canapés on the other. Then, as soon as your plate is full, back away from that table! This will prevent you constantly grazing.
Don't swap meals for alcohol!
Tempted though you could be to do this, it will actually lead you to miss out on valuable nutrients. You might want to stockpile calories for alcohol, but that drink will give you only empty calories! So, this tactic will hinder your body’s ability to detoxify itself.
Eat the right stuff the following morning
Enjoyed your night out? Then a good way of helping yourself to recover from it is consuming a good handful of spinach – the folate in it will assist your body’s repair of DNA. You could have some eggs as well, as the choline they provide will help your liver. A chopped chilli could improve your circulation, while a smoothie with potassium-rich fruits is suitable for replenishing lost electrolytes.
Even after your night out, don’t skip meals
Kerry reveals that she sticks to this strategy even when she has eaten or drunk more than she should have done that night. You can get a lot more advice about how to eat right when you join one of the weight loss retreats that we run. We run these fitness boot camps in a variety of locations.