The holidays can be a time where people throw caution to the wind and let loose. Unfortunately, those choices rear their ugly heads in the New Year when you step on scale or find a favorite outfit a bit snug. By maintaining a balanced regimen, you can still enjoy the festivities of the holidays and avoid the aftermath. Follow the tips below so you will launch into the New Year ahead of the game!
Our bodies cannot store alcohol and make every effort to get it out of our system. Alcohol negatively affects our blood sugar and can cause low blood sugar also known as hypoglycemia. It is the hypoglycemia that increases hunger resulting in the munchies afterwards. Alcohol has no nutrients, fat, carbohydrates, or protein, but this blood sugar imbalance can greatly affect weight.
Tips to Drink Smarter:
- Never drink on an empty stomach.
- Consider alcohol your treat and maintain a very clean diet consisting of vegetables, lean protein, and healthy fats.
- Moderation is key — for men, no more than 4 drinks per day and no more than 14 drinks per week. For women, no more than 3 drinks per day and no more than 7 drinks per week.
- Drink a glass of water between each alcoholic beverage.
- Alcohol impairs absorption of nutrients, so take a good B-complex vitamin before a night out to avoid or reduce a hangover.
- Avoid diet soda mixers and carbonated beverages as the rate of intoxication increases.
- Consult your doctor if you are taking medications as liver metabolism is altered when drinking.
Contribute to the Festivities
If you have particular diet needs, bring a dish to your events even if it is not a potluck. People never say no to more delicious food and you remain guilt-free. Try one of these crowd-pleasing hummus recipes.
Avoid Banking Calories
Many people “bank” food for the day, so they can indulge more in the evening. This tactic usually backfires as you will find yourself ravenous by the time the evening comes. Eat healthy meals consisting of lean protein, healthy fats, and vegetables if you know you are going to indulge later.
Keep up with Sleep
The holiday season can bring about long evenings, but staying on top of your sleep will help you reduce stress and fatigue. The fatigue from lack of sleep can lead your body to crave more food, particularly sugar and salt, to maintain energy levels.
Exercise First Thing in Morning
During the holidays, it is more likely that last-minute exciting activities will derail your plans. Getting your exercise out of the way in the morning allows you to check it off the list and stoke your metabolism from the get-go.
Implement your New Year’s Resolutions Early
Gyms are typically less crowded in December. By combining cardiovascular exercise like walking, cycling, jogging, or swimming with weight training, you can increase your metabolism and build muscle to burn more calories. If you are traveling, plan a body weight regimen ahead to keep you on track.
What is your strategy to avoid the "Festive 15"?
- Dr. Thalia Farshchian, Naturopathic Doctor
This post is solely for informational purposes. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for medical advice. Before undertaking any course of treatment or dietary/health changes, you should seek the advice of your physician or other health care provider.