Posted on 23 December, 2018

How to be Healthy on Christmas Day

By Jacob Andreae in Health, Lifestyle, Nutrition How to be Healthy on Christmas Day

Merry Christmas 🎄With the year coming to an end, a new one about to begin, and the traditional celebration that is Christmas, this time of year can quickly and easily blow out into an overconsumption of food, drink and an expanding waist line.

Christmas is easily my favourite time of the year. From the last week of November when the first Christmas craft fairs start, until new years day, I absolutely love this time of year! Personally, I give myself the 2-week festive season to eat and drink (almost) anything that I like.

I believe indulging in your favourite food and drink every now and then is good for your soul.

The festive season, and Christmas Day in particular, can be a difficult time to navigate if you are trying to be healthy. My belief is that healthy living should fit into your life, not the other way around.

When you “try” to be healthy, it makes it really difficult to stick to. You’re constantly flexing your discipline muscle and burning off your motivation. No wonder so many people say they struggle with these two traits.

I believe that the key to healthy living is learning to love healthy food and regular physical activity. It takes time, but it includes your favourite treats. When you eat healthy and move regularly, I believe indulging in your favourite food and drink every now and then is good for your soul.

I’m also a firm believer in enjoying life's holidays that are synonymous with food and drink — even though they’re typically not very healthy. Of course you can find healthy alternatives, but my suggestion is to combine this with simply giving yourself permission, and enjoying the season (or just the day) guilt-free!

How to be Healthy on Christmas Day

  • Drink lots of water
    Like any day, you should start your day with water. Drink 500ml to 1L of water first thing in the morning. This helps to flush your digestive system, hydrate your cells and make you feel good. In addition, it helps to make you feel full, so you’re less likely to eat as much for breakfast. Which is good, considering you’re going to eat plenty of food during the rest of the day!
  • Stick to 3 solid meals
    If there’s anything more synonymous than presents at Christmas, it’s food! Enjoy all the yummy food in all three main meals of the day. If you eat three solid courses, you’ll be less likely to graze during the day, and hence, over consume. To help you from overdoing it during one course, stick to a single plate, even if it is loaded up.
  • Fill up on lots of good meat
    Meat is full of protein, and some meat, such as fish, is also a great source of healthy fat. Prawns are the hero of many Aussie Christmas day lunches, so celebrate with them on your plate. Leave the sauce and enjoy them plain to really appreciate them for what they are.
  • Enjoy a slice of pudding after lunch (and again after dinner)
    There are few foods that trigger childhood memories like Christmas pudding. It’s Christmas; eat the pudding. However, just eat one slice. One slice after lunch and one slice after dinner, that is.
  • Buy your own drinks and space them out
    It’s not so much the food that is the problem at Christmas time, it’s the drinks. Whether it’s an alcoholic beverage or soft drink, the drinks we consume on Christmas Day are often laden with sugar. I love Bailey’s on the rocks at Christmas time, but I can literally feel the fat accumulating on my body as I sip it. Create a plan ahead of time by buying a small amount of what you’ll drink on Christmas day, and stick to it!

Christmas day can be an exceptionally difficult time if you’re trying to be healthy and are tempted by sweet food and drinks. Give yourself permission to enjoy the day guilt-free. Drink plenty of water, starting with at least 500ml in the morning and continue to sip water all day. Celebrate meat in each meal to help fill you up and don’t forget to enjoy that pudding — but only one slice twice throughout the day. Finally, enjoy a glass of your favourite drop, but buy a limited amount ahead of time and once it’s done, it’s done.

How do you stay healthy on Christmas day?

[Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash]

About Jacob Andreae

About Jacob Andreae

I write and speak about Fitness, Nutrition and Mindset. 

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How to be Healthy on Christmas DayA quick start guide to losing weight and staying on track. Learn the strategies I use to eat and move for optimal health. Includes worksheets to enhance your motivation, commitment and discipline, along with a sample eating plan and exercise program.