By Nico Strydom
You may have been working hard the whole year to maintain a healthier lifestyle or to reach your perfect weight. With the festive season around the corner now is the time to be vigilant and not go overboard.
“Many of us see the holidays as an opportunity to let go and eat and drink too much, but when January comes around we feel guilty and remorseful,” says Catherine Clark, owner and founder of The Harvest Table.
December isn’t necessarily the time to lose weight, but it also doesn’t mean that you have to gain weight. “The fact is that you will now be tempted to eat too much and exercise less, so it’s important that you don’t deprive yourself of something but to instead go about in such a way that you can still enjoy yourself without adding those rolls of fat.”
Clark shares the following healthy habits for the festive season:
Don’t drink all your calories
Most alcoholic beverages, juices and cool drinks contain a lot of sugar and add significantly to your calory intake. Look out for alternative drinks with low calories or non-alcoholic options, such as water or soda water, flavoured with fruit, herbs and extracts that can satisfy your thirst without the sugar.
Stay away from the snack table
The best way to stay away from the snack table, is to not hang out around the table, as it will result in you eating without thinking about it. Fill a small plate with some snacks instead of constantly reaching for snacks one by one. According to Clark, people eat more when they are distracted. Ask yourself, “Am I hungry or am I eating merely because there is food?”
Eat your veggies first
Eat your veggies first before reaching for food with a high fat and sugar content. Fill half of your plate with healthy veggies and eat them first; it will prevent you from eating too much, because there will be less room for rich foods. One way of achieving this is to apply the 60/40 rule – eat 60% nutritious food and 40% of your favourite foods to help you stay on the right path to maintain your goals.
Take heed of what you eat during the day
Most festive season activities take place in the evening. If you therefore know that you will be attending an occasion in the late afternoon or evening, watch what you are eating throughout the day and take in less calories so that you can enjoy eating in the evening without feeling guilty.
Drink lots of water
Water contains no calories and has many benefits, such as keeping you hydrated, maintaining the balance of bodily fluids and preventing constipation. It also keeps you sated for longer. Always carry a water bottle with you and when you are entertaining at home, you can place a jug or container with water where you can see it so that you remember to drink water.
The Harvest Table https://harvesttable.co.za/