Christmas is just around the corner and that generally means the healthy eating goes out of the window and the treat day becomes every day, the ‘I’ll start Monday” becomes “I’ll start January”, there is absolutely no time to exercise because you have a different office party to go to for each team you work with, and then of course you have the many friends and family functions to attend. Summed up, December is a month for pretty much eating and drinking and being merry.
This post is not written with the expectation not to indulge in the festive activities but purely just to offer just ten tips on how to get through the season without feeling guilt about what you ate the night before and perhaps help with the odd hangover.
- There is never a shortage of food at Xmas but that doesn’t mean you have to eat everything in sight. Try to finish eating when you feel around 80% full. This will hopefully stop you needing to lie down on the floor in the recovery position for an hour.
- When out at a party where the drink is flowing, take a handful of unsalted nuts such as almonds or cashews. This can help you avoid the late night chicken or kebab shop or even doing something you regret with your boss.
- Make the chosen alcoholic drink red wine and from the pinot noir grape. Pinot Noir contains the highest level of the antioxidant Resveratrol that has shown to be beneficial for life extension, cardio-protective and play a role in cancer prevention.
- Your mother was right when she said to eat your Brussels sprouts. Part of the cruciferous family along with broccoli, kale, watercress, cabbage, cauliflower, turnips & pak choi, they are important components of a diet supporting the liver to detoxify. Include these where possible on your work nights out or with your Christmas dinner.
- Make sure you get breakfast in you. This is even if you are going out for a meal later in the day. This can help avoid overeating the minute the bread-basket arrives on the table. Think protein…poached eggs are a perfect choice.
- If you have a few late nights planned then make it priority some of the days where you don’t have much on to go to bed by 10pm. This is something your body will thank you for when you need the energy the most.
- Find some time in the day to do a bit of exercise. It doesn’t have to be a full on session but it will be so much easier when you return to your routine in January. This may also help with avoiding weight gain over Christmas.
- Opt for brightly coloured fruit and vegetables. These contain antioxidants to help mop up the damaging ‘free radicals’ caused by alcohol and eating excessive sugar.
- Keep yourself hydrated. Ensure you’re getting enough water in you. Aim to get 2 litres of filtered or bottled water a day and make sure you get some down at the office party.
- Feeling down this time of year? Perhaps it could be due to inadequate vitamin D. Make an appointment with your GP to get it tested and supplement if necessary. See here for an earlier post on Vitamin D.
Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year from everyone at The Naked Nutritionist.