Its coming around to that time of year again. Where the air is constantly filled with delicious sweet scents of mulled wine and warming spices. The streets are filled with the temptation of vibrant Christmas markets and their delectable offerings. Not to mention all those Christmas ads that we eagerly wait for urging us to indulge and give rein to the Christmas belly. For many of us, we spend the year making a conscious effort to maintain a healthy lifestyle. We put work in at the gym and take caution of what we eat and put into our bodies. We look after ourselves and take on the task of sticking to a regular healthy regime. However when it comes to the Christmas period, you hear of the Christmas weight gain and we have some top tips for a healthier Christmas. According to the British Diebetic Society Asscociation the average person will consume 6,000 kcals on Christmas day. Not only that but
‘Over the festive period, which seems to kick off earlier and earlier every year, the average person could consume an extra 500 kcals per day, equating to a weight gain of around 5lb by the time we reach the beginning of the New Year.’
I mean that is insane. On top of this it can take up to three months to shift all the extra weight. I can’t deny that I am a bit dubious regarding these statistics. Looking over at Nutrition.org they claim it is more likely to be around 0.5 – 1kg. This seems more believable as we are in the height of a healthy eating culture, where I feel individuals have a lot more control.
Nether the less why do we have become a slave to Christmas eating, leaving the gyms with money bags in their eyes. We spend the entire year caring, why now do we throw it all away? Well the days get darker and colder and 1 in 3 of us Brits become a victim of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) which can affect many things. However mainly your mood, the lack in sunshine equals a lack in vitamin D, which results in a lack of serotonin, which can lead to a lack in motivation. This means that individuals can retreat into themselves, opting for cosy and comfy rather than cardio. So here are some ways that you can beat that Christmas pile on and still enjoy the festive season.
When it comes to the cold days there are some delicious meals you can rustle up. Lovely creamy soups and voluptuous stews. These are meals that take the least time and preparation. Many being simple one pan dishes, where you can bang all the ingredients together and leave to simmer or stew. Winter also brings us an array of scrumptious fruit to keep that sweet tooth away such as apples, pears, dates and oranges. We also tend to want to fill up on carbies like bread and potatoes. Yet if we switch these around to sweet potatoes and other root vegetables you’ll get your 5 a day in. Also trying opting for things like quinoa instead of white rice and pastas.
For those who do not go the gym the thought of a nice jog with the frost nipping your fingers and the light shower from the icy rain, makes us jump straight into our onsie. I mean the windswept look isn’t great all the time. However the best way to beat the Winter blues is to keep your exercise regime. This will create a flow of serotonin bringing your low moods up to a high. Not only that but you normally set that time for a workout so why not do one. There are so many YouTube videos and workouts you can do at home. Go for some aerobics or a cardio HIIT. This will make sure your not getting out of shape and losing the hard work you’ve put in the rest of the year.
This will help you to avoid all that nibbling and sample tasting. Eating filling nutritious meals should cut out that temptation to snack. It also means if you have a nice meal planned, or want to head to the festive markets, you wont feel guilty about that little treat. Life can’t be all dull. The plan is not to over indulge!
Christmas time tends to be that moment when the party animal comes out. The mulled wine, the dinner and office parties, and meals out. However alcohol can be such a big contribute to weight gain, The saying beer belly does not come from nowhere. Opt for slimline tonics and sodas for mixers, and maybe just that sociable drink instead of getting bladdered.
Sticking to these points will hopefully result in your Christmas weight gain staying at a minimal. There is no reason why you can’t have fun this festive season and enjoy the treats it brings, however there in no need to binge or crash diet. If you stick to a good workout regime you could keep the weight off all together.
*Disclaimer – I am not a certified nutrition. These are points that I have found work well for me therefore can also work well for others. Enjoy your festive time.