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Finding the Balance in the Christmas Season

Tis’ the season to be jolly, and with social invitations flooding our mailboxes, it can be an exciting but overwhelming time of year. December is full of rich food, parties and social gatherings, not to mention thinking about Christmas shopping, wrapping and preparing for the big day. 

So, can you get the balance over the festive period? Of course you can! Here are five simple things to keep the balance this Christmas.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! Mom and daughter decorate the Christmas tree indoors. The mornin

1.     It’s okay to say no!

This applies to so many situations and once you’ve made this your mantra, you’re on a one-way street to a stress-free Christmas. It’s okay to say no to party invitations if you’d rather stay in and watch a Christmas movie. It’s okay to limit the amount of food you’re providing for the Christmas spread to keep stress levels low – and it’s even okay to say no to that super rich festive food. Christmas is the season of goodwill, but it’s also the time for self-preservation and relaxation. Take care of yourself and if that means saying no – say no!

2.     Pace yourself

As mentioned above, the Christmas holidays bring a wealth of social activities and plentiful party spreads. It might seem obvious, but make sure you pace yourself. We all have varying limits when it comes to consuming food and drink, and it’s definitely a good time of year to be aware of these and listen to your body.

Christmas or Thanksgiving turkey on rustic wooden table

3.     Eat little and often

We’re all guilty of it over Christmas – over eating. It’s just so hard not to when there are so much delicious meats, chocolate, mince pies and other festive goods lying around the house. Eating a lot in one sitting can be extremely hard for the body to digest, so it is good practice to get into the habit of eating smaller amounts in regular intervals throughout the day. For example, go for a smaller turkey lunch portion, and then enjoy a delicious turkey sandwich later in the day, and make sure you have a good size break between the main Christmas lunch and dessert. This is a great simple way to limit that overindulged and bloated feeling.

4.     Plan ahead

Again, this might seem obvious, but getting your head together before the festivities begin can massively reduce your stress levels. Make a list of all the food you need to buy, the meals you’re going to cook and get your food shopping done before the rush. Equally, thinking about Christmas shopping in September or October may seem too early, but if you’re hosting as well, getting it out of the way saves last minute flapping. Make lists and plan ahead – you’ll be pleased you did later on!

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5.     Find healthy alternatives

With free-from products booming in the supermarkets, you’re sure fire to find a healthier alternative to almost any product you want to buy. Take mince pies for example. Many health food stores offer raw or vegan alternatives, and these can be really delicious. Equally, why not try swapping in dark chocolate in place of milk? Dark is packed with powerful antioxidants. And of course, make sure you have plenty of vegetables on your Christmas day spread. Think turnips, parsnips, brussel sprouts and peas  - the more, the better!

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