Healthy eating advice for the festive season

Slimming World Consultants

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Slimming World Consultants

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newsroom@longfordleader.ie

Healthy eating advice for the festive season

Slimming World Consultants share their tips to protect your weight over the Christmas and New Year period

As Christmas and New Year get closer, Longford Slimming World Consultants are sharing their tips for successful slimming to help local people make healthy choices through the coming Festive period.

Lots of people will be making resolutions to lose weight and improve their health in January.

Managing our weight over Christmas is a true test and many can find it really tricky to not put on weight with so many temptations and over indulgence.

The two weeks of Christmas are tough but the run up to Christmas a lot of the time is where the damage can be done as we are so busy....eating on the run a lot of the time and finding we are under pressure both time wise and financially.

Over Christmas our members know that with the right support they can still lose weight if they wish too but so many members opt for damage limitation - perhaps deciding that they will build in some flexibility when needed but absolutely make ongoing healthy choices and changing habits as they go.

Here are our own top tips to do just that.

And you’ll find even more slimming support, advice and inspiration at our Slimming World groups.

1. If going out for a meal/ Christmas party checking out the menus online beforehand can be a wonderful way of feeling in control. You can decide before what you might ask to swap to make a better choice- like swapping chips for a baked potato or salad or perhaps asking for a fresh fruit salad for dessert reducing the calorific value of that meal enormously. Asking for sauces on the side will help too and steering clear of choices that are deep fried or including pastry.

2. If at a buffet fill your plate sky high first with satisfying free foods (unlimited on our ExtraEasy Plan) like cooked meats, salads, chicken drumsticks, rice and pasta salads and prawn ring. Then if you do fancy a treat on your plate, choose those that will really hit the spot and enjoy them. The trick with a buffet is to fill your plate and walk away from the table as we tend to hover round a buffet table and keep grazing on things like cocktail sausages, sausage rolls and crisps and it is so easy to over do it once we start with these high calorific foods.

3. Find ways to protect your best intentions- like fill up before you go out with satisfying healthy meal and so the temptation to graze on the high calorific foods isn’t so much a difficulty or offer to drive if you think you might drink / eat more than you intend.

4. If we do go overboard and our best intentions go out the window sometimes guilt will set in and we feel we have blown it. That can then lead to feelings of annoyance and lead to further sabotage so being able to forgive ourselves for slip ups is an absolute must then just move on to the next meal or choice with positivity and readiness to make a great choice. Learning to be kinder to ourselves and recognising that we're only human and all have lapses at times can make it easier to get back on track and choosing sensibly.

5. Adding some activity on a regular basis improves mood and increases resolve to make good choices so clearing out the cobwebs and getting a good walk with the dog at any opportunity is a great idea too. Or plan in some family activities over the holidays that get the whole family moving.

6. We will be out and about so much more on the run up to Christmas and it is so easy at every opportunity to be upsold unhealthy food and drink as a result of verbal pushes in coffee shops, fast food outlets, restaurants and petrol stations- like adding cream and marshmallows to your festive coffee, going large in a fast food outlet or adding extra sides in a restaurant. It will happen at every opportunity so being armed with your response can be really empowering- 'just this thanks' is all it takes.

7. Alcohol can play a huge part in weight gains for those that enjoy a tipple. Drinking really affects our eating and activity habits and through Slimming Worlds own research we know that once the average person passes their personal tipping point (that point where resolve weakens and our best intentions go out the window ) on a night out, we consume more than 6,300 more calories in a 24hr period. We will eat and drink more than intended that night plus lots of extra calories the next day too with cravings for high fat and sugary foods. We may well even cancel physical activity the next day too. This can equate to a weight gain of up to 2lbs per week for those that do this just once on a typical weekend. Which is why so many can gain vast amounts of weight over the Christmas holidays with daily socialising being a regular occurrence.
Tips that our members would share around alcohol would be to choose measured portions of spirits and top up with lots of slimline mixer, if in company perhaps skip every other round and have a diet soft drink instead of alcohol or opt for beers and wines with lower alcohol content that will drastically reduce the calories (and the hangover)

8. In our Slimming World groups in December we will be supporting each other with ways to still enjoy our Christmas Day/ St Stephen’s Day and will be swapping recipes and foodie ideas how to create fabulous Free food feasts for starters, mains, desserts, tipples and snacks and buffets.
Pop onto our website www.slimmingworld.ie for tips and recipes including Christmas Dinner the Slimming World Way and fantastic desserts like the traditional trifle and yule log.

With a little bit of planning and a determination to make great choices we can all enjoy Christmas and New Year without the weight gain that so many of us dread.

Wishing all our present, past and future members and Longford Leader readers a very happy Christmas and a healthy and slim 2019.

Siobhan, Tona, Brid,
Lorraine and Caroline
(Longford Consultants)