Let's face it, this time of the year, no matter who you are, the tendency to over indulge is inevitable. I'm definitely what you may consider a healthier eater, however when it comes to celebrations and gatherings, I enjoy indulging.
There are a few basic guidelines, however that allow me indulgence without all of the guilt,
or at least the heavy, bloated feeling that comes with this time of the year.
1. Give your body time in the morning to wake up before feeding it:: And this includes most beverages. Take an hour or two or even three and let yourself actually get hungry.
Drink a large glass of water.
Lay off fats, sugars, proteins and heavy additions to your beverages. Instead try warm water with lemon, or even better, a shot of unpastuerized apple cider vinegar in warm water with a little lemon. You could do herbal tea or if you like you am cup of coffee like I do, try it black, or with a little stevia for flavor.
Your body will thank you for the extra time for rest and repair.
2. Start your day with water::
While you sleep at night your body is working to process all of the junk through your liver. Waking up and drinking a large glass of water (I like to do a quart) helps to flush all of this out, instead of letting it linger.
Try drinking at least half of your body weight in ounces of water each day. When you are dehydrated you feel more hungry, get more sugar cravings, and because your brain is actually a whopping 85% water, you can even feel more confused and foggy when you are lacking it. Staying hydrated will help flush your system of all of the unwanted toxins and junk that make you get sick and gain weight.
3. Drink a glass of water before every meal::
Drinking water 15-20 min before a meal creates a feeling of fullness, but more than that, the lining under your stomach is 80% water, which buffers the acid in your stomach, reducing indigestion. It triggers your digestive response, in turn processing your food more efficiently and reducing indigestion and reflux. When you feel a binge coming on, take a pause, drink a tall glass of water and THEN have your treat. Hopefully this will keep your indulgences to a minimum.
4. Fix yourself a plate:: Instead of snacking, which is hard to stop, make a plate, or a bowl and stop when you're finished.
5. Don't forget the veggies:: They will help you get the necessary vitamins, nutrients anf fibers that will remind you to crave and make better food choices. Try making half of your plate veggies. (No potatoes don't count!)
6. Eat palm sized portions of everything else:: When you are fixing yourself a plate, start with the half plate of veggies and take a palm sized portion of protein and starch.
7. Move your body:: Make time in every day to move your body. A long walk, yoga, vigorous exercise. You're body will thank you for it!
8. When you can, chose real food:: Whole food, foods where you can actually picture them in their natural state.
9. Stop eating and drinking well before bed:: Give your body a few hours before bed to digest all of the things you have given it that day. Stick with water or herbal tea. At night your digestion slows down and your body can focus on repairing and rejuvenating instead of processing food. You'll wake up feeling so much better.
10. Enjoy every bite of all the things you eat:: Eat the things you love. You don't need to say no. Enjoy life, enjoy the parties, say yes. Enjoying every bite instead of feeling guilt actually makes the food better for you!!