Festive Season Nutrition Planning Doesn’t Need to be That hard!
These festive season nutrition tips will give you flexibility, while giving you good guidelines to use over this coming festive season.
- Moderation is the key with your festive season nutrition plan! Being too rigid in your thinking might swing you towards ‘all or nothing’ mentality. Instead swing towards most of the time I do and occasionally I may fall back here and there, but this will become less and less as you realise you don’t feel deprived when you follow your new program but actually feel rewarded by feeling fully energised every day! Fully capable of living your best life! That is a great place to be!
2. Plan what you have ahead of you and consider obstacles that may present over the holiday?
A) A break in routine disrupts what you usually do… prime time to lose focus and track?
B) Being away from home means you need to think ahead and do some shopping so you have access to some good food choices that are convenient when others may resort to junk options some of the time. You can opt to stay on track while being subtle and not disrupting your social activities.
Avoid making it a huge task but more a quiet consideration that will be there for you when you have opportunity. E.g. Raw almonds and fresh fruit, natural yoghurt in the fridge. These are great to fall back on instead of skipping a meal and then filling up on high fat and less than good nutritional choices, that are always everywhere at this time of the year.
3. Eat 3 meals during the festive season or replace a meal with two small snacks spaced apart, have a bit of what you feel like then fill up on veg and protein. Then ‘fast’ till your next meal. This will keep you on track a whole lot better and stop the kilos of fat piling on over the holiday. You can avoid the dread and feel great the whole season though.
4. Be aware that if you do start eating more sugary and fatty foods than you have been your blood sugar and hunger hormones after a period of restriction will be wanting to push the accelerator. You need to avert this by drinking lots of pure water first and try eating pure protein before you eat anything of that nature. This will help minimise this effect. But also know it is ok to ignore impulse and distract yourself with other activities. Exercise balances out those sugar levels and cravings well. Once you increase your sugar intake again cutting back again is something that usually takes a day or so of cutting back to set it right again. So keep these points in mind when considering your approach and choices. The key is to be aware of your choices along the way. Avoid old routines!!
What about alcohol?
5. Alcohol usually features more at this time of the year and disrupts the festive season nutrition and fitness routine! If you are going to have some alcohol then avoid any snack foods, sugary foods and carbs. When you do have alcohol fill up on protein, salads and nutritious foods and you will find you will do just fine if you find a balance. This is a way of restricting the amount of calories you will take in, so desert/carbs/snacks included in a meal with lots of low calorie sparkling mineral water or a few glasses of wine with a lean roast and lots of healthy veg and salad choices. Tomorrow is another day and you can change it up.
6. Keep Moving! Your fitness has increased. You will find you want to move more so encourage the social aspect of being active (back yard cricket, walk along the beach, ride the bikes, swimming and activities that get everyone moving around at least 1-2hrs after a good meal. If you eat a lower amount of sugary and carb based foods you will also feel less lethargic than usual after eating not only too much but lots of sugar, fat and concentrated foods together
7. Separate high fat and high carb foods. E.g. Hommus dip or homemade avocado dip with veggie based option (carrot sticks, celery, cucumber sticks etc.). To dip… Rather than chips and dip or oily crackers choose low fat but quality and still nice crackers. Try choosing whole meal and seeded options that are less processed.
8. Shopping selections: Dips – bought dips are often nearly all processed fats!! Read ingredients and choose those that are vegetable/tomato/chickpea based and have the least oil on the list of ingredients. Dip is so easy to make and so much nicer than the bought stuff. It also costs a fraction of the price! You can make the stuff in the kitchen while all the action and social activities go on. It is impressive to make and present some great tasting dips that are also nutritious for people to try! Add veggie sticks and Rye bread and Dukkah with some balsamic and a dash of quality extra virgin olive oil. Explore the options.
9. Think about quality over quantity – select a bit of what you’re really feel like, take some time to consider, there is no rush in the holidays so take time to enjoy and savour the things you do enjoy. Encourage others to join you and take some time.
10. Include some intermittent fasting! I love this idea around festive season nutrition and think it could be employed 1-2 times per week annually.
Here’s a great article that supports this plan here by Dr John Rusin Use this as an option on a day where you have had a big meal/ eaten more calories the day before/ or will not be exercising.
Use the following morning to complete an intermittent fast and drink 1-2L pure filtered water. You can simply sip on a B.C.A.A drink or eat some pure scrambled egg whites which are pure protein without any carbs.
By having some protein this will supply the muscles with amino’s but encourage your body to burn energy stored in glycogen from the day before when you ate more calories. This will help prevent you from storing up body fat but do make sure you then eat a healthy meal when you break your fast so that your body does have access to good protein and some complex carbs as well as some good essential fats. E.g. Lean chicken salad with avocado, spinach and boiled cooled chopped sweet potato rolled in a drop of olive oil and balsamic dressed with cracked pepper and rock salt.
11. Don’t set out to party on an empty stomach. Always eat either a meal or snack of protein, veggies and some essential fats before heading out. This will help stabilise your blood sugar and prevent you from overeating and giving in when you know it’s not the best for your goals long term.
12. If you feel you have ‘fallen off the wagon’ at any point don’t delay, avoid or let guilt delay getting back on track. Accept it and just go back to what you know makes you feel better. Sometimes it’s just about starting, just do it! Procrastination is seldomly anyone’s friend.
My last tip for your festive season nutrition plan is to try juicing. Similiar to intermittent fasting or to work in conjunction with this. try juicing for breakfast and eating only between 12-8. This is a simple and very effective method for weight management.
I hope this helps your festive season nutrition plan and as always if you need some help just ask firstname.lastname@example.org
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