It’s very easy for a healthy diet to unravel during the silly season. Here are six ways to stay on top of your game, and still enjoy the season.
Set your non-negotiables
Put limits in place and stick to them. This includes the amount of alcohol you plan to consume; stopping yourself from eating a second serve; sitting down and eating mindfully, rather than standing up or picking at food as you prepare it; and sharing a dessert, rather than having a whole one to yourself.
If dining out, look at the restaurant menu online first to decide what you are going to eat. This way, you can feel confident in making the healthiest choices and you don’t fall into the trap of picking what to eat when you’re hungry.
This goes for food and alcohol. You’ll be surprised how slowing down your eating allows you to feel full sooner. If you’re planning to drink alcohol, have a glass of water between each drink and place the glass of water in easy reach, to make it effortless.
Choose drinks wisely
Lots of juice, soft drinks, cocktails and sugary mixers will send your blood sugar and insulin through the roof, potentially increasing hunger and weight gain. On an empty stomach, they can result in a blood-sugar crash, which could lead to late-night snacking. Keep it simple and skip the fancy cocktails.
Bring a healthy side dish
When invited for festive occasions, offer to whip up your favourite healthy side dish. This way you know there is something you can eat that helps you stay on track and you won’t be tempted to pick at less healthy options.
Get plenty of sleep
Don’t underestimate the power sleep can have on your weight. A poor night’s sleep and you’re more likely to gravitate to unhealthy foods. Caffeine too late in the day will also interrupt the quality of your sleep. Ideally, avoid any caffeinated drinks after midday.