Many of us see the festive period as a time to enjoy ourselves, let our hair down and have fun. This is not without good reason but at what price?……………………….
Around Christmas time the urge to overeat and over indulge on alcohol is more apparent than any other time of year. Supermarkets tempt us with aisles of tasty treats and discounted offers that are hard to resist. The average person will put on between 5-10lbs in weight resulting in raised cholesterol and in some cases contributing to heart disease.
Another health concern surrounding Christmas is the raised awareness of depression and anxiety. Remembering a loved one that is deceased, feelings of loneliness, pressures to spend money that is not readily available and general family pressures are all contributing factors. These feelings can also lead to over eating or drinking to mask sentiments and hence we have a vicious circle that begins.
Reading all this may be enough to send you into a depression already!!! , But fear not, after all it is Christmas and joy to all men (and women!!) etc. There are measures we can take to reduce the risks and limit the damage that this time of year brings, have a look at these 12 rules for a healthier Christmas……….
- Make a Christmas budget and stick to it.
- Do a secret Santa with your loved ones so that you only buy one present instead on many. (You may find others thank you for this)
- If you are going to a Christmas party, make sure you have eaten during the day so that you don’t arrive hungry and pick at more than you normally would.
- Take from the food buffet sufficient food then move away, do not stand at the side, this tempts you to eat more!!
- If you are drinking alcohol then have a glass of water in-between, this avoids the dehydration the next day and actually stops you drinking as much.
- Eat your Christmas dinner slowly instead of shovelling it in! This will trigger the brain to tell you when you are full.
- Christmas dinner isn’t necessarily unhealthy. Have a large portion of veg, large portion of turkey (great source of protein and low in fat) and only a small portion of potatoes. (We don’t generally do loads of exercise on Christmas day so carbohydrate isn’t needed as much!!) If you need gravy then use sparingly and don’t let your food swim in it!!
- Take a walk after Christmas dinner, this will help to digest your food and burn off a few calories.
- Know the signs if you are feeling depressed, try not to fall deeper into the darkness. Have a number you can ring if you are in difficulty, many organisations work over the Christmas period so you need not be alone.
- Take a pilates class if you are feeling the effects of stress or anxiety, it can help to reduce the symptoms. (Jump Physio runs a class, call Keiran …….)
- Up your exercise regime during the festive period so that even if you are over indulging a little, it will at least help to maintain your weight. Try a circuit class which is great for fat burn (Probalance Health Mon 19:45- 20.30 Bredbury, Thur 18:15-19:00 Sat 10:30-11:15.
- Employ a personal trainer to help you through it, save some sessions for after Christmas and make a healthy start to 2013 (lucky for most!!) Personal training available at Probalance Health with a great special offer at the moment 20 sessions for £600 usually £700.
We wish you all a great Christmas and all the very best for 2013. Together we can make it a healthy one!!
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