December is the month of celebration & parties but it also tends to be a time where we consume high fat & high calorie food. Here is a smart guide to make sure we stay in shape after the December party binge.
During the party season…
- Start with a nourishing breakfast, have a light lunch, then a small snack before the party.
- Always eat normally on the day of a party. People who skip meals to save up calories tend to overeat everything in sight once they get there.
- Watch your portion sizes. Use a smaller plate ~ your mind will consider it a full plate regardless of its size!
- Pile your plate high with traditional seasonal vegetables such as red cabbage, carrots, sprouts and cauliflower. The more colors you have on your plate, the greater the variety of nutrients. Make a sweet potato mash with a hint of ground cumin. This will make a nice change to the standard potato mash, plus it’s a healthy lower-GI alternative.
- Every party now has a salad counter, Mediterranean dips have made their way too. Snack on hummus and carrot sticks, and those tiny crackers, which will help fill the gap before the main course – when you get tempted by chips & junk food.
- Alternate your drinks. Alternate one alcoholic drink with one non-alcoholic healthy drink such as water, sugar free lemonade, sparkling water & plain soda.
- Be careful with top-ups. Topping up your favorite dish with EXTRA cheese, mayo and butter will add on extra calories.
- Avoid anything that’s made with cream, syrups, caramels, artificial flavor.
- Stay away from the dessert counter. Take a few bites of your favorite dessert from your friend’s plate to fulfill your cravings.
Before going to party…
Avoid going hungry to parties. Eat something light before the party to reduce your chances of snacking on high calorie party food.
We all want to look our best in our out fits hence it is that we consume a lot of water & increase our intake of fruits & vegetables to avoid water retention & bloating.
Examples : a bowl of fruits, a healthy sandwich, a bowl of salad, a glass of milk
Make sure you load your plate with…
- Vegetable sticks, rice crackers
- Beetroot, tzatziki, avocado dip
- Pasta in red sauce
- Fruit salad with yoghurt
- Clear vegetable soups
- Grilled chicken / fish / paneer
- Live counters serving pasta, sir fry, soups & sandwiches
Foods to limit
- Creamy dips
- Shepherd pie
- Fried starter like lollipops, samosa, tikki, chaats
- Cakes like rum cakes, plum cakes and slices with cream
- Glazed Vegetables
- Chicken / mutton biryani
- Roasted turkey
Give your alcohol an antioxidant boost
Using Vodka, Whisky with ingredients like antioxidant – packed green, mint and oolong tea as a smart mixer. Low sodium tomato juice is chock-full of cancer fighting lycopene & fresh lemon juice aids digestion.
Heal the hangover
- Brew a warm mug of ginger tea. Ginger has been shown to help combat nausea.
- Alcohol can lead to dehydration, so make sure to continuously drink water throughout the night
- Drink fresh juice to give yourself a vitamin boost, vitamin C will help give you the energy you’ll need.
- Use black coffee or green tea as much as you can.
- Coconut water is rich in potassium which acts as a diuretic & helps you stay hydrated.
After the binge episode – at home…
Now is the time when the guilt comes in & you want to undo the heavy meal & the wrong foods that you have had.
- For 1 week, go ready to eat free. This will mean do not eat anything that can be consumed out of the packets. Ex.
- Instant foods, biscuits, instant soups, chips, ice creams, carbonated beverages etc.
- Limit your salt to 1 tsp and oil intake to 3 tsp a day.
- Include green tea, lime, mint, chamomile tea in your day to day routine
- Take a break from alcohol — which is nothing but empty calories that play havoc with your blood-sugar levels.
- Eat fresh home cook meals.
“NOTHING IS UNHEALTHY IF YOU EAT IN PORTIONS”
This is a guest post by Khyati Rupani, an accomplished dietitian and founder of Balance Nutrition.