It is again that time of the year when you want to just eat, drink and be merry.
Christmas is a time for celebration and fun, time to dig in to all the puddings and treats which are presented to us laden with love and cream, even before we realize, our current wardrobe might face a risk of a complete makeover.
The season links strongly with excessive eating caused by the abundance of treats and social events. The season, as the word states, is referred to a period of days, indulgence in treats over this period of time has a detrimental impact on all the efforts throughout the past year and can raise a feeling of guilt in the New Year.
We all know maintaining weight is a huge challenge, so a good goal to set would be - if not to lose weight then not gain either.
Our social outings and family get-togethers are significantly higher during this season causing a double jeopardy - more treats and no time for the gym - a lethal combination which is a snag that one needs to be mindful about during this season.
If unable to hit the gym without an increase in your usual food intake, there is a good chance that you will manage your weight but if you dig in to the ‘Oh So Yummy - Aunty’s pudding” or such other delicatessens each day the outcome is clearly spelt out, it may be hard to fit in to your clothes……sounds frightening !!!
So some key areas to focus this season are:
• When eating out choose healthier options – salads, greens etc. are good to fill your plate with.
• Grilled is good, with the sun at its full glory, summer is a perfect excuse to have BBQ’s – A great way to catch up with friends and relax too!!
• Fruits are great – Fruit and fruit salad add color to your plate and are very refreshing during summer – this should be your first choice over any dessert.
• Green vegetables add a delight to any meal – stir fry, bake or even add them to your salads - go for it.
• When attending events or parties, compensate your intake at other meal times – Go light before the party.
• Think Healthy – train your mind to pick and choose the right food.
• Go slow with alcohol, choose to add tonic water or dilute it with a low-caloric beverage
• While enjoying a drink, be mindful of the snacks, nibbling at chips and nuts add a lot.
• While enjoying dessert, look for options, pick a fruit based dessert and definitely avoid adding extra cream or syrups for toppings.
• The more you see, the more you want - Stand away from the serving table.
• Get moving whenever possible, park your car at a distance and walk to the venue. Add as much physical activity to your days whenever you can.
Remember this is the perfect time to relax and spend with family and friends, do not feel starved or deprived, have a safe, joyous and healthy Christmas.
This article is a general guideline ONLY, if you have any medical condition and for individual conditions you should consult a health professional or your medical practitioner immediately.
Varsha Asrani is a New Zealand Registered Dietitian. For personal consultation or any question, suggestion or views please email her on email@example.com.