It is the most wonderful time of the year (the Christmas carol isn’t lying) but for many of us we tend to go too far and over indulge during the festive season. Then February hits, we have gained weight, our energy is low, our skin is looking horrible and we are after the best detox to get us back on track. The truth is there are steps you can take to make this process less daunting and keep your body feeling, whilst still enjoying this festive time with family and friends. My top five health tips are:
- Portions- there is no reason to over do it with the refined sugars, meats and starchy carbohydrates (bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, cereals). Just because they are in front of us, doesn’t mean our plates need to be over- filled. Your portion size shouldn’t change from any other day. Yes, maybe what’s on your plate may change, but how much you consume shouldn’t. When having your meals, take this into consideration.
- Alcohol- so we are all going to have a cheeky drink over this festive season. There are so many social events and practically unlimited alcohol available at every event you’re invited to. But lets be real, it seems as though these drinking sessions last more like 2 months when it should only be a couple of weeks. Alcohol can cause your liver to become sluggish and therefore breakouts to appear more readily, energy levels to drop and some serious digestive issues occur. The answer to this is to have a limit! When going to a social event have no more than 2 standard drinks per day (and not everyday). Pick 2 days of the week (only 2) where you will allow yourself a few drinks and keep it at that.
- Sugar- listen to me when I say this, sugar is a major culprit for most, health conditions. Sugar causes inflammation in the body, which is a major causative factor for ill health. In most cases it’s the sugar that we eat that is a major contributor to weight gain over this festive season. When it comes to sugary foods (cakes, biscuits, soft drinks etc), only allow yourself one serving per event (not everyday).
- Increase your herbs- I don’t necessarily like the word ‘detox’ (as I believe you should be giving your body a light detox everyday through the food you eat), but increasing herbs that have detoxing properties may just be a way your liver can thank you throughout this festive period. Some herbs you can add into your daily diet (roughly a bunch) to assist your body in removing toxic wastes include:
Add them to juices, salads, stir frys etc.
- Exercise- you need to keep moving around, this festive season is definitely not a free pass to avoiding those workouts. The toxins from being off our normal eating regimes and increased alcohol intake need to be eliminated somehow, so why not get them out by sweating. You don’t have to spend hours in the gym either. As a personal trainer I recommend doing high intensity workouts for only 20-30 minutes. Get down to your local park or beach, do some sprints, body weight exercises and then enjoy the rest of your day. Aim for three times a week!
Love life (and have a lovely festive season),
* Disclaimer: My posts are not to be used to treat or diagnose health concerns and provided as information only. They should not be used as individualised treatment plans and programs. Contact your health professional to investigate what advice is best for you.