It’s that time of year again. Some of us love it and others loathe it. Yes, the festive season is upon us and there is not a lot you can do to avoid the carols of Michael buble’ in almost every store.
For many of us, December is a race to the finish line; a time when our work lives wind down but our social lives wind up culminating with the commencement of a new year. This is often associated with an increased consumption of alcohol and rich foods which tend to be highly processed and laden with sugar. These celebrations are an inevitable part of Christmas, and it’s a time of year we should all enjoy. It’s a chance to appreciate the loved ones in our lives. For that reason we want to ensure our bodies are well equipped to deal with the extra load we place on it during this merry time.
Here are a few tips to ensure you healthily see 2016 through.
• Liver detoxification
Your liver has got a lot to deal with during this period. Give it a helping hand with a few of these tips:
– Begin the day with a glass of warm water and the juice of half a lemon.
– Load up on the brassica vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale). They assist with liver detoxification by combating oxidative stress and not to mention the other benefits of these lovely greens!
– Assist the liver with its detoxification process by increasing dietary fibre. Try blitzing linseeds, sunflower and almonds (LSA) in the blender and keep it in the fridge ready to sprinkle on your porridge/ muesli or smoothies. It is also a great source of protein and healthy fats, bonus!
• Reduce sugar intake as much as possible
This one is tough during the Christmas period but there a couple of things you can do to ensure you aren’t consuming more than necessary.
– Try to avoid going anywhere hungry. Ensure you prepare yourself a healthy wholesome meal before heading off to a party to prevent yourself from over indulging on snack food.
An excessive amount of processed fats and sugar can mess with the gut flora. Some of the not-so beneficial bugs in our gut flourish on sugar, which can cause an imbalance in our micro flora. Therefore, it is important to supplement with a high quality probiotic, for more information on this contact the clinic.
• The 80/20 rule
It’s about eating the best you can to support your body 80% of the time and feasting for the remaining 20% of the time. Christmas day may sway towards 50/50 but as long as you can turn this around come Boxing Day then you are doing a great job.
Foods to enjoy 80% of the time
Raw nuts (except peanuts)
Fresh seasonal vegetables, a rainbow of colors
Fresh seasonal fruits
Whole grains (quinoa, oats, millet etc)
Fresh chicken (free range where possible)
Lean cuts of lamb and beef
Meat alternative (tempeh)
Foods to enjoy 20% of the time
Roasted nuts and seeds
Refined sugars (found in chocolate and baked goods)
Refined grains (white rice, noodles, pastas, breads)
Processed meats (ham, salami, chorizo, cabana)
Cream, sour cream, cream cheese
Packaged food (chocolate bars, chips etc)
Soft drinks, cordial, processed juices
Alicia McVilly (Nutritionist) B.H.Sc (NutMed)