Dr Helen Lawal | Blog | 5 Ways to Eat Well During The Festive Period
5 Ways to Eat Well During The Festive Period

5 Ways to Eat Well During The Festive Period

December is upon us and all the festivities provide endless opportunities for us to overindulge. There's the pre-Christmas catch up with friends, the works Christmas do, the Christmas Day binge and the Boxing Day leftover grazing session! For me, not only do I want to feel and look healthy, but I want my heart, liver, bowel and brain to be healthy too! This means making the right decisions not just at Christmas but all year round. Here are some ideas to help you get started this December...

There are loads of lovely seasonal vegetables about. Visualise your plate as being divided in to halves - aim to fill half of your plate with vegetables. They are full of nutrition and fibre and won't leave you feeling sleepy or bloated. If I'm eating out I order an extra portion of veg to go with my meal.

Drink plenty of water. There is a tendency to drink less during the colder winter months. If the thought of drinking a cold glass of water leaves you feeling... well, cold - then why not try a hot water with a slice of lemon or orange, or a caffeine free herbal tea. But beware of some fruit teas- they can have a high sugar content and can be acidic.

Soup is a great way to keep your calorie intake down at lunch time, allowing you to enjoy that evening meal out with friends or colleagues. It will warm you up on those cold winter days, whilst leaving you feeling full. Team with oat cakes or rye bread for a high fibre option. Be careful of shop bought soups as they can have a high salt content.

I have a sweet tooth and enjoy a glass of wine, but to keep my sugar intake down, when I'm eating out I will choose either dessert or a glass of my favourite alcoholic splurge. There are 160 calories in a large glass of red wine and 182 calories in a pint of beer.

Avoid over-eating. It's easy with so much tasty festive food about to eat more than you usually would. Try and keep your portion sizes down. And listen to your body, give yourself a 30-minute time out before deciding if you really want that second helping!

Eat well and be merry!