12 Healthy ways to enjoy Christmas without putting on Weight

Christmas is notoriously a time to indulge, but don’t let this be the green light to overindulge!

You can still enjoy all the festivities of the season and get through the Christmas period without too much impact on your health and waistline.

Try our top 12 tips for a healthier Christmas 😃

Parties and gatherings are filling our calendar and that means many opportunities for eating and drinking. Here are our strategies for coping with the overindulgence and late nights that are an inevitable but enjoyable part of the festive season:

Bring ONE dish to share (a low-calorie nutritious choice for the meal)

Veggies

Try to fill half your plate with raw or cooked vegetables for as many meals as you can. If you’re the one bringing the good stuff you’ll always have something green (or red, yellow & orange) to put on your plate!

Here is a low-calorie winter soup recipe

TWO alcoholic beverages (sticking to two limits your liquid calories)

French paradox

Alcohol only supplies empty calories, so avoiding proper meals to compensate for a booze splurge means you’re losing out on valuable nutrients, just when your body needs them to help it detoxify. To help prevent a hangover, stick to one type of drink and I make it a lighter-coloured one because they tend to be lower in the chemical by-products that can worsen a hangover. Aim to have no more than one alcoholic drink an hour, alternating with fresh juice or plain water – perfect if you don’t like holding an empty glass.

Here are natural hangover cures

THREE healthy and well-timed snacks (have a slice of cake but keep track and don’t overdo it)

Healthy cake

If you’re hungry when you arrive at a party, you will struggle to resist the cakes, so it’s always best to have a pre-party snack. One of my favourites is a small pot of plain yogurt with a sliced banana. The yogurt’s protein slows stomach emptying, which helps delay the effects of that first glass of alcohol while the potassium-rich banana helps balance any increase in the salt intake. Other snacks which do the trick include multigrain toast with nut butter, a bowl of muesli with milk, or a mug of soup.

Here are 6 easy & portable snack recipes

FOUR fruits for snacking (when hungry, choose a serving of fruit instead of sweets)

Healthy snacks

Make fruit-based desserts. In winter, our access to seasonal fruits means that we have delicious, sweet treats, bursting with nutrition to fill our bellies after a meal. Think oranges, fresh berries, apples, plums and more!

Here are my favourite foods to stop cravings

FIVE veggies each day (get all those phytonutrients by meeting this daily minimum)

Vegetable chilli

Having a good helping of vegetables with your meal will add vitamins, minerals and fibre and help you towards your five a day, but beware vegetables that come with added butter, cheese sauce or salt.

If you’re in charge of the cooking, offer steamed or boiled vegetables without salt, and steer clear of cheese sauces, or adding bacon to your sprouts, or butter to your carrots or peas. With everything else that’s on the table, no-one will miss these added extras. Ensure that your Christmas shopping list enables you to fill up the veggies bowl and get your recommended daily portions of veg.

Here is a guide to different types of Salt with Their Uses and Benefits

SIX feet from the buffet (prevent mindless eating by moving away to converse)

Mindful eat

Go for quality, not quantity. There is no shock that during the festive season we all eat, eat, and eat more.  All justified because it’s Christmas.  So, unfortunately, it doesn’t take long for those extra kilojoules to start to add up. So my tip, go for quality, not quantity.  Instead of going for buffets dinners, have one meal and enjoy it.  Instead of quickly drinking six glasses of wine, have two and enjoy it. It’s all about eating your favourite foods over the festive season in moderation!

The power of mindful eating

SEVEN days of exercise (don’t forget to exercise regularly during the holidays)

Weight loss

Don’t forget to exercise over Christmas whether it’s a brisk winter walk, cycling, some yoga or any way you prefer to increase your heart rate. Stay active! Gather the family and walk up a mountain, run around at a playground, swim in the river or beach and just move as much as you can! Keep it fun!

EIGHT glasses of water (daily, and especially before and during parties and gatherings)

Water for weight loss

Don’t forget to keep drinking filtered water. It’s so easy to forget when we are not in our usual routine but dehydration will make you feel sluggish physically and mentally, give you dry skin, headaches and may lead to eating even more!

Choose plain mineral water over soft-drink or diet soft-drink. There is going to be enough sugar, fat and energy in the food at Christmas time. Enjoy the bubbles and fix without the excess energy.

Here is the Best Way to Drink Water for Weight Loss

NINE ounces of protein (three 3-ounce portions of lean, natural protein each day)

Chicken vs fish

If you’re eating at home, try to plan what you eat with your health in mind. Choose lean cuts of meat, and remove any visible fat, and try to limit your red and processed meat you have in favour of fish, chicken, turkey and plant-based options.

If you’re eating out, try to choose the healthiest menu options to make the meal fit into your normal diet, rather than just going for your favourites.

Best sources of plant protein with all essential amino acids

TEN pounds we won’t gain (by sticking to a healthy eating routine through the season)

Weight loss

Aim for weight maintenance. It may be unrealistic to try to lose weight over Christmas. If you’re still on your weight loss journey, how about aiming for weight maintenance during the festive season. It’s good practice for how you’re going to eat long term after you’ve lost your weight. Resume your weight loss routine in the new year.

13 TIPS TOWARDS HEALTH WITH REDUCED FAT

ELEVEN new choices (if you tried 1 new healthy food/month, we now eat more variety)

Healthy cooking

If your Christmas duties include cooking the dinner, then you must believe that Tasty food doesn’t have to be unhealthy. If you’re having a Christmas party at home, make this an opportunity to cook creatively. Bake instead of deep-frying, use olive oil instead of butter, etc. Replace salt with herbs and spices to flavour foods. You can also serve your friends with an assortment of healthy, home-made dips. Vegetable sticks with guacamole or hummus are great options. 

Here is your guide to pick the healthiest cooking oil

If you’re attending a party, offer to bring something with you. This gives you and the other guests a few healthier options to choose from. A healthy appetizer, a salad or a fruit platter are options that you can make easily.

TWELVE counted blessings (count your blessings every day)

Yea

We all enjoy sharing a meal with family or friends but have you considered doing something different? That way you are more likely to avoid unhealthy food options, and you’ll save money, too. You could go for a winter walk together, perhaps with a flask of tea or coffee. 

Here are easy ways to get back on a track after falling off your Diet or Exercise

Rather than wait until January 1st to set your New Year’s Resolutions, take some time out now to think about what health goals you would like to achieve in 2021. Write them down and create a vision board around them. Doing this in December will help keep your goals fresh in your mind and be a gentle reminder to stay as healthy as you can over Christmas so you are not creating extra work for yourself come January!

Following these simple steps helps you remain healthy during the holidays.

Have a Merry Christmas and a Blessed Holiday Season!

By Priyanshi Bhatnagar

Also, read The Secret of Eating for Pleasure “The French Paradox”

13 TIPS TOWARDS HEALTH WITH REDUCED FAT

Do you think eating healthy means you have to radically change your diet and give up all your favourite foods?
Think again!

The key to a healthy diet is to eat the right amount of calories for how active you are so you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use.

If you eat or drink more than your body needs, you’ll put on weight because the energy you do not use is stored as fat. If you eat and drink too little, you’ll lose weight.

You should also eat a wide range of foods to make sure you’re getting a balanced diet and your body is receiving all the nutrients it needs.

Also read: How sleeping fewer leads to weight gain

It’s recommended that men have around 2,500 calories a day (10,500 kilojoules). Women should have around 2,000 calories a day (8,400 kilojoules).

Here are 13 steps you can take to improve your diet starting today.

Do them all if you can !

1.Base your meals on higher fibre starchy carbohydrates

Eating carbs

Starchy carbohydrates should make up just over a third of the food you eat. They include sweet potatoes, bread, rice, pasta and cereals.

Choose higher fibre or whole grain varieties, such as wholewheat pasta, brown rice or sweet potatoes with their skins on.

They contain more fibre than white or refined starchy carbohydrates and can help you feel full for longer.

Here is how eating fibre is good for your health

2.Adopt Vegetarianism

Plant protein

No doubt, non-vegetarian foods are rich in nutrients- a very good source of protein, iron but fat also and that is cholesterol- the main culprit of heart disease. Along with this non-vegetarian meal, cooking in any form will always serve you a very dense source of calories. Indigestion that will further lead stress on all organs and will easily deposit around them.

Here are the best sources of plant-based protein

3.Order drinks with skim milk – and skip the add ons

Latte

Many people treat themselves to a daily frothy coffee drink in the fall and winter, and when the days turn warmer, they trade in their lattes in for iced or blended coffee drinks. Ordering your daily coffee treat with skim milk instead of whole lets you keep what’s nutritionally great about milk (good-quality protein, calcium and vitamin B-12) while cutting calories and fat grams. Skip the “whip” the baristas squirt generously on top, and you’ll save even more calories and fat.

Here is a healthy alternative to artificial sugar: stevia

4.Eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods

For good health, we need more than 40 different nutrients, and no single food can supply them all. It is not about a single meal, it is about a balanced food choice over time that will make a difference!

Your daily food selection should include bread and other whole-grain products; fruits; vegetables and dairy products. How much you should eat depends on your calorie needs.

5.Enjoy plenty of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables

Complete meal

Surveys show most people don’t eat enough of these foods. Just take a look at your daily diet plan and found how many times in a day you consume them.

Eating a variety of foods, regularly, and in the right amounts is the best formula for a healthy diet.

Also read : Are you stuck in a FOOD RUT

6.Keep an eye on quality

Eat-in moderation will keep you light and will help your digestive system to work properly.

7.Eat regularly, control the portion size

Skipping meals can lead to out-of-control hunger, often resulting in overeating. When you’re very hungry, it’s also tempting to forget about good nutrition. Snacking between meals can help curb hunger, but don’t eat so much that your snack becomes an entire meal.

Healthy snacks

Here we have a list of healthy snacks to munch on

Paying attention to portion size will help us not to consume too many calories, and will allow us to eat all the foods we enjoy, without having to eliminate any.

8. Balance your food choices over time

Not every food has to be “perfect.” When eating a food high in calories, salt, or sugar, select other foods that are low in these ingredients. If you miss out on any food group one day, make up for it the next. Your food choices over several days should fit together into a healthy pattern.

Healthy cookie

9. Know your diet pitfalls

To improve your eating habits, you first have to know what’s wrong with them. Write down everything you eat for three days. Then check your list according to the rest of these tips.

10. Make changes gradually

Cravings control

Just as there are no “superfoods” or easy answers to a healthy diet, don’t expect to revamp your eating habits overnight. Changing too much, too fast can get in the way of success. Begin to remedy excesses or deficiencies with modest changes that can add up to positive, lifelong eating habits. For instance, if you don’t like the taste of skim milk, try low fat. Eventually, you may find you like skim, too.

11.Cut down on saturated fat and sugar

You need some fat in your diet, but it’s important to pay attention to the amount and type of fat you’re eating. There are 2 main types of fat: saturated and unsaturated. Too much-saturated fat can increase the amount of cholesterol in the blood, which increases your risk of developing heart disease.

On average, men should have no more than 30g of saturated fat a day. On average, women should have no more than 20g of saturated fat a day.
Children under the age of 11 should have less saturated fat than adults, but a low-fat diet is not suitable for children under 5.

Here is a guide to choose the healthiest cooking oil.

12.Do did not skip breakfast

Breakfast

Some people skip breakfast because they think it’ll help them lose weight.

But a healthy breakfast high in fibre and low in fat, sugar and salt can form part of a balanced diet and can help you get the nutrients you need for good health.

Here are the quick & healthy breakfast ideas under 100 & 200 calorie

13.Drink plenty of fluids

Water for weight loss

Adults need to drink at least 1.5 litres of fluid a day! Or more if it’s very hot or they are physically active. Water is the best source, of course, and we can use tap or mineral water, sparkling or non-sparkling, plain or flavoured. Fruit juices, tea, soft drinks, milk and other drinks, can all be okay – from time to time.

Also read: Best Way to Drink Water for Weight Loss

Further information

• The detoxpri consultation can help you get the right balance of the 5 main food groups. The consultation shows you how much of what you eat should come from each food group.

• Read more about the Winter Nutrition Guide: Natural Food To Keep Your Body Healthy & Warm This Chilly Season

Hope you liked this blog!

Weight Loss: How to get back on a track after falling off your Diet or Exercise

It is difficult to follow your healthy eating track when life keeps getting in the way. Whether it’s work, family commitments, or vacations, it is more than likely you fall off the track of your healthy eating goals. The last thing we want is to give up completely.

We’re all human, so it’s normal to get sidetracked when trying to eat healthy. But falling off the wagon doesn’t mean having to stay off.

Enter Priyanshi Bhatnagar, Certified Holistic Nutritionist effective Strategies, a leading online nutrition consultant specialising in weight management, disordered eating, gut health, metabolic nutrition along with holistic healing. Eat up, lose weight, and feel energized on her easy nutrition plan.

There will always be instances when following your routine is impossible. You don’t need superhuman willpower, you just need strategies that can pull you back on track.
With that said, here are Priyanshi’s 8 strategies that you can use to Reset and Recharge After Falling Off the Healthy Eating Track.

1.Start now, not tomorrow

Don’t wait for tomorrow, next Monday or next month to put your plan into action. Start with your next meal. If you’re going away, have something in the fridge or freezer that you can cook easily when you return or, if you shop for food online, book in an order of healthy foods to arrive when you get home.

Weight loss tips

Even if you’ve had a big lunch, a chocolate bar, or a piece of cake already today, don’t let that stop you making a start today.

2.Focus on Small Changes

Start Small!  Smaller changes are proven to be more effective long-term than bigger ones. Think about an area that you know you need work. For example, if you are skipping meals like lunch your first goal could be to eat your three meals per day and then balance it with mostly vegetables, a source of lean protein and a whole grain carbohydrate like millets or a starchy vegetable like sweet potato.

3.Focus on Consistency

The trend in today’s world based on current science is that extreme fad diets do not work in the short and long term. While you may think you experience true weight loss, extreme weight loss short term simply results in loss of muscle. By losing muscle, you decrease your metabolism and not only gain the weight back over time but have a harder time losing weight again.

Food choice

Sticking with a whole foods diet incorporating healthy fats and other balanced food groups, you experience a loss in body fat and sustain or boost muscle when incorporating a fitness routine. These are the lasting results that matter for your weight and health along with how you look and feel.

4.Get Active

Exercise keeps you motivated by making you feel good, empowering you with the realization of the strength of your body. Plus, fitness is proven to boost your mood and keep you focused which helps you eat better. It will also help you physically see the results of your weight loss efforts more quickly and it is a proven necessity when you have to keep the weight loss off.

Stay active

Don’t become overwhelmed by the word “exercise” and instead make a less stressful commitment to simplybe active.” Any movement you do and consistently will work in your weight and health favour long term.

5.Don’t starve yourself after a day of eating

Starving yourself just sets you up for overeating at your next opportunity, and that defeats the point. The first thing you will do is reach for all the wrong foods, like bread and carbs. Eat a modest and balanced breakfast here are Healthy Breakfast Ideas for Busy Mornings under 100 calories & 200 calories. That way when you walk into the room full of food your body will be nicely fueled and you will be able to make a rational decision of what (and how much) to eat.

Low Cal breakfast

6.Hydrate And take 10 minutes to see if you are thirsty, not hungry

Most of the time we are struggling with eating too much, or wanting to eat less and skip a very critical component of our weight: water! Simply drinking primarily water, will help meet your fluid needs and decrease your weight. Not only does hydration help your total weight, but it also boosts your metabolism by 30% helping you burn more calories simply by drinking! Try to incorporate hydrating foods like fruits and vegetables into your diet as well as help meet your fluid goals.

Dehydration

11 Weird Things That Happen to Your Body When You Don’t Drink Enough Water

7.Don’t buy diet cookies, snack on fruit

Rather trying to find a healthy snack from the huge range in the shops, limit yourself to fruit or veg for between-meal snacks. These are low in calories, provide plenty of nutrients. And it has the advantage of being a really simple goal and you’ll easily be able to tell whether you are achieving it.

Low calorie snacks

To reduce temptation, don’t go down the supermarket aisles with cakes, biscuits and sweets – here we have Guilt-Free Sweet Fix Cookies

8. Plan to keep hunger at bay

When you let yourself get too hungry, it’s all too easy to overeat. To avoid that, plan nutritious snacks into your day. When you’re away from home, carry a “snack pack” filled with healthy options: things like dried and fresh fruits, baby carrots, nonfat yoghurt, trail mix, whole-grain cereal, nuts, and baked chips or check our 6 Portable Healthy Snacks

Healthy Snacks

Get Back on Track

Change can be hard. In the beginning, your healthy habits might take two steps forward and one step back. Anticipating those backwards steps can make all the difference in the world. Develop a plan for getting back on track and recommit to your routine as quickly as possible.

Weight loss

These are just a few of the many examples of real people getting back on the road to health via the detoxpri diet. The important thing is staying motivated and having the tools to get yourself back on track because you can reach your goals even with a little detour. For more, head to the Instagram page, or learn more at www.detoxpri.in.

P.S. If you want more practical ideas to make a healthy relationship with food (and enjoy mindful eating), check out my book CONFESSION, which will show you how small changes in habits can lead to remarkable results.