With Christmas parties, office dos, social events, and family get-togethers over the festive period, it is so easy to gain those extra pounds with the abundance of extra food, which is often composed of more indulgent choices than we would normally make. So it is no surprise that on average we gain 5lbs over the Christmas period, according to The British Dietetic Association. So here are a few ways you can be sure to keep control of your waistline over Christmas.
Tip 1: MIND OVER CHOCOLATE
As tempting as it is to have one or two of the chocolates left at the reception at work, try and enjoy the taste of will-power more, as these brightly packaged sweets can contain up to 50 calories a time, and more than that, the sugar in them will then make you feel tired, so that you are then more likely to reach for more. So use mind over matter to decline these!!
Tip 2: SPRITZERS WIN
For Christmas drinks, simply make sure you avoid those creamy liqueurs, and instead opt for spritzers, and always add ice to your drinks. And why not be healthy and virtuous with a sophisticated bloody Mary – that way at least you are getting one of your 5 a day.
Tip 3: PICK LIGHT
Canapés: these tiny little treats served at parties can be stuffed with salt, sugar and high levels of fat, so always pick the smoked salmon over the creamy mushroom-stuffed vol au vent. If you are making them yourself then try these, smoked salmon served on beetroot quark with beetroot stars, or prawn cocktail made with low fat yoghurt and lime juice and grated radish.
Tip 4: GO SWEET
When making Christmas dinner, if you can’t give up your roast potatoes (and if we can’t tempt you to go for a sweet potato mash instead, low-fat and tasty), then cut them big and chunky, so they absorb less oil while roasting.
Tip 5: TRY THIS
Christmas dinner can actually be a very healthy meal, done right. If you go in for eating the turkey breast without the skin, have lots of vegetables, have boiled potatoes instead of roast, and skip the bread sauce, this meal then becomes very healthy, and stops you feeling bloated and stuffed. But it is only once a year, so a little of what you fancy is okay, as long as it is only a little!! Also, if you can’t resist the Christmas cake, then have it without the icing and marzipan, as this will save you lots and lots of calories.
Tip 6: FILO VERSUS SHORTCRUST
We all love mince pies but often bought ones are laden with calories and have thick shortcrust pastry cases. So why not make your own healthy ones, and do them in a light filo pastry case without the pastry lid on top? Make these super calorie-saving healthy mince pies which you can then impress the girls in the office with.
Tip 7: SNACK ATTACK
Instead of crisps and creamy dips, try a toasted wholemeal pita bread cut into small slices making pita chips, along with vegetable crudites, and have dips like guacamole and salsa, or make a nice dip of low-fat Tzatziki, using low-fat yogurt with added cucumber chunks, a sprinkle of dill, and poppy seeds for an extra crunch.
Tip 8: STEER AWAY FROM THE SYRUP
Be careful with your festive lattes. Even though the tempting Christmassy adverts make them look mouth-watering, these extra shoots of caramel, gingerbread and festively shaped snowflake chocolate sprinkles all add up. For example a Costa Coffee Medium Cappuccino Takeaway with Gingerbread Syrup and Whole milk will be 331 Calories…..so a lighter choice would be the Medium Latte with Skimmed Milk and Sugar-Free Vanilla Syrup at 113 Calories.
Tip 9: ORDER RIGHT
When eating out for Christmas lunches, always opt for a healthy starter like a clear soup, salmon or melon, and try and say no to the bread. But if it is too tempting, then at least opt for brown over white.
Tip 10: SPEED IT UP
If all else fails ,then look at adding some fat-burning foods to your daily diet, so that you can then counter-balance those naughty treats. Fat-burners include things like mustard powder, so you could add a pinch of this to your scrambled eggs in the morning. Or you may be more of a sweet tooth, so opt for another fat burner such as cinnamon, and sprinkle a little in your latte on your way to work!!!
But if you need to burn off those extra Christmas calories then download my 4 Minute Fast Fat Burning Workout and let me keep you in shape over the festive period. So in between wrapping presents, writing cards, and stuffing the turkey, you can squeeze in my 4 minutes of fat burning exercises!