How to Enjoy a Moderately Merry Christmas Holiday and a Healthier Happy New Year!
It’s that time of year again when diets fall by the wayside, exercise gets put on the back burner and drinking becomes a test of endurance rather than an occasional pleasure.
Yet getting into the Christmas spirit need not be a seasonal story of excess. It’s actually very easy to enjoy the holidays and look after your health.
So, here are our top five tips to help you avoid any post-party-season hangovers:
One: Be Merry (Just Not Too Merry).
- Have a glass of water between alcoholic drinks to help stay hydrated.
- Volunteer to be a group’s designated driver to avoid temptation.
- Don’t hit the bottle too early in the day.
- Try non-alcoholic beers and drinks with lower levels of alcohol in them.
Two: Get Up Off the Sofa
- While it might be tempting to spend most of the holidays wrapped in a warm blanket, sat by the fire, watching every episode of the latest must-see Netflix series, try to move around at least once an hour to keep the blood circulating.
- Go outside, take a walk in the park, enjoy some fresh air – it’s free and one of the best gifts you can give your body.
- Do some exercise, even a little, because you will feel all the better for it both physically and psychologically – and you won’t feel so guilty when the next dinner invitation comes along.
Three: Step Away From the Plate
- Just because there’s a lot of food about it doesn’t mean you need to eat it all.
- If you are convinced you to need a second helping, wait 20 minutes after finishing your first. This will not only aid your digestion but you will be surprised how quickly the urge to eat subsides when you stop eating.
- Enjoy a good breakfast. Don’t starve yourself in readiness for the main event later in the day or evening, you will only end up overeating or eating too fast, both of which will leave you feeling uncomfortable.
Four: Try to Be Good This Christmas
- While chocolates, sweets and rich puddings go with the holiday territory you can limit their health impact with smaller portion sizes.
- Take the focus away from food and put it on festivities. Pack your days and gatherings with fun things to do like party games to stop your mind from wandering towards the treat cupboard.
- Buy Christmas snacks that are better for you such as festive fruits, nuts, plain popcorn and vegetable crudités with a low-fat dip.
Five: Be Kind to Your Mind
- For some people, overindulgence can lead to negative feelings of guilt and self-loathing so if this sounds like you, try to protect yourself by not steering too far off course in terms of your normal diet and exercise routine.
- Remember, a week or so is not going to undo all your good work so don’t put too much pressure on yourself to eat healthily. Simply try to moderate your eating and drinking and pick a healthier option should one be available.
- Take the stress out of the season by learning to say ‘no’. You don’t have to attend that party, you don’t have to have that third slice of cake, you don’t have to meet up with people you don’t like, and you don’t have to pretend to be a superwoman or superman. It’s your holiday season too. Enjoy it.