5 rules for guilt-free holiday eating

5 rules for guilt-free holiday eating

Fuelling Your Body

BY FITZ-GEORGE RATTRAY

Sunday, December 15, 2019

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THE holidays mean different things for different people. For some it's a couple of public holidays, for others, perhaps a family meal or two, and still others, it means two to three or more events per week with large buffets.

Unfortunately, it is also a time of stress and overindulgence for some, which put an increased number of people at risk for weight increase, illness and worse. However, with a few minor adjustments you can lower your risks and enjoy your holiday celebrations.

HAVING YOUR HOLIDAY CAKE AND EATING IT TOO

You can definitely do one to three holiday eating occasions per week, drink alcohol, eggnog, sorrel, have cake, and share the company and experiences. But how?

Something we discovered over the years, what you do in any given day is not as important as what you do in any given week. What you do any week is not as important as what you do that month, and what you do for any season is not as important as what you do the rest of the year.

Wellness is about consistency, but it is also about balance and averages. The key is, as always, to be clad in true, fact-based information, and to be consistent.

BALANCE YOUR HOLIDAY INDULGENCES

1. Do not cheat have a planned indulgence Understand that you will never cheat, you will instead have a planned indulgence. Have a plan and do not worry about theincrease of a couple of pounds. Get back on track with your healthy eating the very next day.

2. Aim to maintain your weight throughout the season Don't be fixated on losing weight during holidays, vacations, celebrations etc. Attempting to lose weight at these times can trigger guilt and stress, which often sabotage your long-term goals. Instead, be happy to maintain or near maintain your weight throughout.

3. Control your eating Drink water in-between meals and with meals, if possible. Choose where and when you will have sugar-based and alcoholic beverages — try to limit them to one or two per week, and where available choose low-calorie drinks, such as vodka and gin, and after, have a tonic water or water with a lemon in hand to avoid feeling out of place.

Have at least a half plate of vegetables. They are usually prepared with the least fats and simple carbohydrates, are filled with fibre and micronutrients, and will reduce the overall blood sugar spiking effect of your meal.

We know it's tempting, but after you plate your vegetables, feel free to choose what you like as long as it fits on the plate. Those at least one bite of everything you feel for to reduce the temptations and cravings, but do not return for seconds. Stay away from where the food is being served after you eat, and have mints on hand to reset your palate and help punctuate your eating.

4. Eat sensibly in-between occasions

Do something different for yourself; this is a special time and you are a special person.

In-between the eating out and partying days:

• Have meals primarily of vegetables, plant-based, and contain natural sources and proteins, in that order.

• Avoid all processed foods.

• Drink primarily water.

• Do not pre-starve yourself before occasions — this will only serve to ramp up your cravings.

• Don't try to crash diet or stress yourself over a couple pounds here or there.

• Get on track with a healthy eating system.

• After the season/holiday, get on a genuine detox-triggering programme.

5. Set your mindset

Understand that these changes can change your future, possibly even save your life, so embrace them this and every season, holiday or vacation. Seek support — your cravings will influence your behaviour and make you believe they is what you want. An objective, knowledgeable party is best.

Food is a part of the life experience, and sharing in eating is a part of the human experience. Enjoy, not at the cost to your wellness, but plan to enjoy intelligently, year after year, with friends and family.

Fitz-George Rattray is the director of Intekai Academy, which is focused on helping people live a healthy lifestyle through nutrition and weight management. If you are interested in losing weight or living a healthier lifestyle, give them a call at 876-863- 5923, or visit their website at intekaiacademy.org.


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