Are you at the stage where you find yourself wanting to keep a healthy check in on the foods you eat over the festive season?
It is not surprising that many of us start to feel sticking to healthy habits is all too hard! Why is that? We are constantly surrounded by food and attend many social occasions during the Christmas and Holiday period, and often with the festive spirit is the cheer of, one won’t hurt or just a little bit is ok!
If you are a person that can apply this rule and know when to stop before one becomes many or you are able to increase the exercise to balance those extras, great! You are going to be ok. However, if you find yourself not stopping, then planning for this time is beneficial for you.
The team at 360Me Nutrition have a healthy and balanced approach to good nutrition. We do not believe in restricting foods, but we do believe in good portions, good planning lead to good health, hence we have a few tips for you that will help you enjoy yourself without the restriction.
Keep reading to see our Bonus Recipe for Christmas Cherry and Chocolate Balls below!
There’s no reason why you can’t still enjoy this timeless classic with a few healthy adjustments while you are trying to stay on track with your health. After all, it’s about normalising your intake and not restricting it!
Desserts can be a big part of Christmas celebrations – unfortunately they don’t contribute much nutrition to our diet, but it’s an occasion! For this, it’s all about enjoyment and portions (if you can check the energy, keep to no more than 200 calories for these foods in your day)! Try one of these swaps to still enjoy a Christmas day (not week) treat, without undoing all your hard work.
Attending functions or special occasions ready to eat an entire everything on the table is never a good idea. When starting the morning try beginning with a balanced breakfast of low GI carbs such as oats and high protein milk or even a protein dish of scrambled eggs with veg and a side of yoghurt. This can help curb your insane hunger during the day. If the occasion is in the evening, eat regularly throughout your day, have a fibre rich meal or snack before you go like some snow pea, celery, capsicum & cucumber sticks with hummus or 1 scoop plain Greek yoghurt dip (Tatziki) or 40g of nut butter.
The tip is to have smaller portions, this way, you can arrive with your appetite in check, and still be able to enjoy the evening! At this point, choose what you love and not what you think you should have or just like… make every mouthful count. Instead of saying ‘no’ to all those occasional foods, only choose the item or couple of items you really know you will enjoy and let go of the ones you only ‘like’.
For example, I love custard and fruit cake, but I only just like potato salad. So, I will choose to eat a piece of custard and fruitcake after dinner but swap the creamy potato salad for baked vegetables and salad. Allowing yourself to SWAP in and out foods like this will reduce the amount of guilt associated with food decisions and allows you to enjoy your social events!
It is a time of celebration and in Australia that often means bubbles and beers. Remember moderation! If you choose to drink, then opt for a shot of a clear spirit with a soda water/ diet mixer instead of beer & cider. If you’re a wine drinker then slow yourself down by finishing one glass at a time, then chase it with a non-alcoholic drink (like the fruit flavoured sparkling waters). Always aim for at least 2 alcohol free days per week, your liver needs time to recover too.
During this time our dietitian, Marcela can help you to plan your festive menu, create healthy but indulgent snack recipes, help you to plan and prepare your post-holiday recovery. It’s not just about what to eat, it’s also about managing the environment around you.
We understand in your busy festive schedule that seeing a dietitian to get on top of health concerns may not be top of mind right now. However, if you have health care goals you don’t want to slip or a timeline you want to discuss, having a quick chat with Marcela, with no expectations of having to “Diet” During Christmas can be arranged. Topics to discuss include:
Makes about 24 servings
Optional: melt some white chocolate to drizzle over the top for an added Christmas effect!