Christmas Survival: 7 tips to beat the Christmas Bulge

Personal Training in London - AG Personal Fitness

I love this time of year it’s always so much fun.

Christmas is so much more than just one day these days,  it seems to start around the last week of November and finish sometime after New Year’s Eve – that’s more than a month!!

I’m sure you’ve been knee deep in Christmas parties already!

If you’re conscious of your health, your weight and your general well being Christmas can be a really challenging time. 

There’s tons of socialising with loads of rich food and of course waaay more booze than normal….

Lets look at a few shocking Christmas facts:

1) BEFORE LUNCH (2.08pm) the average Brit has already consumed there ENTIRE daily recommended Calorie intake!

2) People eat an estimated 7,000 Calories throughout the day!! -THREE times the amount of energy needed in a 24 hr period!

If that wasn’t bad enough….

3)The average person will gain 6lbs (!!!) between Christmas Eve and News Year’s Day!!! 

That's in 6lbs in 7 Days people!!

So how can you get through this festive season and still look and feel good, and avoid putting on that extra weight?

Here are 7 tips on maintaining your health over the festive season.

  • Keep Moving It’s easy to get super busy during this festive season and decide to leave exercise to the new year. Unfortunately, this is the absolute best time to keep moving your body, even if it’s as simple as a dailywalk, exercise will contribute towards the detoxification process, ensuring all of the body’s pumps are functioning effectively.
  • Drink In Moderation Alcohol is “empty calories” which not only disturbs how we metabolize sugar and fat but also reduces our ability to make wise decisions in relation to food. The less you drink, the less likely you are to reach for the high fat, high carbs snacks being offered. Alcohol will also affect your blood sugar handling for the following 24 hours, making it harder for you to make the right choice the following day in relation to your nutrition. Again, you are more likely to crave sugary fatty foods even if you don’t have a hangover.
  • Stay Mindful. In group situations, with an abundance of food and drink it’s easy to get caught up eating unconsciously. Whether it’s because you are used to eating more when you are around your family or just because there’s so much good food, remember to serve yourself a moderate amount of food to start with. Eating at a slower pace will help to send the satiety signals to your brain......After you’ve finished, if you can, resist the urge to load up your plate and wait for 5-10 minutes to see how you feel. Satiation takes approximately 20 minutes, waiting a few minutes after eating (as well as eating slowly) can help you avoid over eating.
  • Watch the Carbs If you’re going to eat dessert and drink alcohol then it’s a good idea to minimize carbohydrate consumption with the main meal. Alcohol and high sugar foods all increase the secretion of insulin which promotes fat storage in the body. Try to eat mainly lean protein and low starch veggies for starter and main, that way you can kick your heels up a little for dessert.
  • Allow For Slip Ups You’ve got to accept that you’ll eat and drink more than normal. If you understand that it’s going to happen then you’ve got a much greater chance of controlling elements such as when and how much.’ If you’re eating three decent meals a day, seven days a week, you can afford for 10% to be less than optimal. Just keep a record of what you’re eating and it will help you stay on track and focused on your goals.
  •  Rest Rest Rest These days our lives are so frenetic, filled to brim with obligations, commitments and other environmental stressors. The body really doesn’t distinguish between physical stress (like lack of sleep) and emotional stress (like work stress, relationship stress, negative emotions). The human body creates the same reaction to all of these types of stress – production of cortisol which can have many knock on effects to the body including increased inflammation, increased insulin/problematic fat metabolism and decreased immune function.  Remember, when you can, to let your body rest, get adequate amounts of sleep and take time out to enjoy the break from work. Turn your phone off for the holidays, or at least on check it at set times each day so you not constantly looking at it. Make sure sure you put your out of office on so you don't feel the need to reply to every message that comes in, you are entitled to a break too.
  • And Most Of All, Have Fun! Christmas is a time to come together with loved ones and family and celebrate. Smiling and laughing reduce the level of stress hormones like cortisol and epinephrine. Studies have shown laughter even increases the number of antibody – producing cells and improves the function of T cells, resulting in a stronger immune system.  So enjoy the fun and festivities as much as possible, your body will thank you for it!

 




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