Stephanie Moore, co-creator of our award-winning health Regime, shares her helpful tips for taking a balanced approach to festive feasting feasting:
- Ahead of Christmas day itself, don’t ‘save’ yourself by not eating beforehand or you’ll risk over-eating when the time comes. Instead, have something filling to eat mid-morning, then clean your teeth or chew some naturally-sweeted gum.
- Try and get in some exercise before the meal begins. Just 10 minutes of something vigorous can increase calorie-burn while you’re eating. Afterwards, take a gentle 30-minute stroll to help digestion and reduce blood sugar levels.
- Spend a moment in gratitude for what you have. A bit of reverence for your food is not only good for the soul but also allows a moment’s preparation time for the digestive system to kick in.
- Eat slowly. This is so important. Savour every mouthful, chew thoroughly and stop before that overly-stuffed feeling forces you to stop. Think comfortably full rather than about-to-pop.
- Always match volume of alcohol with volume of water
- If having dessert, make it small, rich and satisfying. Why not have a fresh-fruit crumble, using minimal sugar, some unctuous Greek yogurt or a cheeky dark chocolate truffle or two?
- And then … don’t eat until you are hungry again. That will probably be lunch the next day at the earliest. Don’t eat just because of the time on the clock, eat because you are truly in need of re-fuelling. You will find you enjoy your food much more if you eat only when hungry and your body will thank you in so many ways if you give your digestive system a proper break of at least 12 hours, and ideally longer.
This is not about missing out and depriving yourself, it’s about respecting yourself, your health and preparing your body for the winter months, when we are prone to feel sluggish and perhaps put on some weight.