With the arrival of Christmas comes the worry that we’re going to have to make more an effort to tighten our belts. Whilst Christmas can be a challenge, it’s not impossible to keep healthy. Here are my top Christmas tips to prevent weight gain over the festive period.
Eat like a child: Regularly Know the importance of eating regularly (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and put it into practice. You’ll have much greater control of your caloric intake and hunger, meaning that you are less tempted by the high fat and sugar treats that float around.
Sitting on your drinks Let’s not beat around the bush, alcohol is high in calories, so going to endless parties can make managing weight difficult. Practice being ‘stealth’: develop your capacity to hold on to a drink longer than others without drawing attention to it. When consuming alcohol at social events consider spacing out your drinks with sodas. Alternatively, choose drinks that don’t need to be chilled so that you can hold on to them for longer e.g. Red wine, rum, whisky etc…
Vegetable variety Yes they are packed with vitamins, minerals and fibre (you know that already), but including vegetables at both lunch and dinner fills you up (ensuring that you are satisfied post meals). Meals don’t have to be all vegetables or all salad, just aim to make them a third of your meal.
Push it real good Kids not walking yet? Get some pavement time by pushing that pram around town for your Christmas errands. Leave the car at home and push that pram like it’s a treadmill and weight machine in one.
Think before you act Question hunger. Christmas can be a month long eating fest filled with parties and food gifts. When you’re diving into another fruit mince pie it’s important to consider if you are actually hungry… Or are you just eating it because it is there?
This time of year is difficult and it’s likely that you will slip up. Don’t worry, just take it in your stride and learn from it. Enjoy the festive period and remember: if you do better than last Christmas you have been successful!
Perryn Carroll – Registered Dietitian MNutrDiet BSP&ExSc