How to avoid weight gain over Christmas

Staying on the health wagon over Christmas need not be daunting; it all comes down to choosing healthier options, enjoying a few treats and not feeling guilty or deprived. Christmas is a time of celebration, spending quality time with family or friends and enjoying good food. If you do have a big blow out or two make sure that you enjoy it and get back on track the next day. Feeling guilty or trying to make up for excess calories the next day by starving yourself or punishing exercise can lead to deprivation and the start of a never ending cycle of yo yo dieting.

Follow these simple tips to stay on track this Christmas thereby avoiding the pitfalls that a Christmas blow out can bring -

  • All things in moderation. Remember it is Christmas after all, a time of celebration not deprivation. If you really want slice that of Pavlova have it and enjoy it. If you completely deprive yourself it is not sustainable, you will end up giving in after one too many champers devouring the entire left overs straight from the fridge!

  • Become mindful of why you are eating. We can often fall into the trap of eating without even realising we are nibbling away at the cheese platter. Be aware of the food that you are putting in your mouth rather than mindlessly snacking on nibbles and platters. The more aware of the food we are, the more we take time to savour and enjoy it which leads to greater satiety after eating.

  • Portion control. Take small portions and move away from the nibbles. If you sit right next to the buffet you are likely to eat more food. Help yourself to a serve and then move away.

  • Keep your routine. If you have had a big night or an indulgent weekend it is important to get right back on track the next day. If you usually exercise, meditate or attend yoga classes aim to stick to your regular routine. When we are on holiday it can be easy to fall out of routine such as skipping breakfast or exercise which can result in a lowered self-esteem and over eating later in the day. Routine. Routine. Routine.

The most important thing to remember is to relax, have fun and not to be too obsessive about what you are eating or drinking. Having a little splurge now and again is not going to have any major long term negative health implications it is what we do every day for the rest of the year that really counts. Go easy on yourself.

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