Most people succumb to a bit of over indulgence over the holiday period whether it be more treats than usual, rich food, meals out or lots of  party tipples of the alcoholic varieties! So come January you might like to make some changes to shed any excess inches you have gained over the festivities. However, January doesn’t have to be a month of feeling hungry and denying yourself the enjoyment of food. If you put in place a few sensible guidelines you can enjoy your food and eat your way back to good health and your pre-Christmas waist line.

  • Don’t skip meals the most important meal of the day… breakfast! Regular meals are important to keep your energy levels stable and prevent the cravings that come with dips in blood sugars. Skipping meals often leads to over indulgence later in the day and it can be hard to make the right food choices when you are too hungry.
  • Get moving! 45 minutes of brisk walking or equivalent exercise is fantastic for gaining muscle, improving metabolism, shedding excess fat and boosting your mood! You don’t need to sweat it out in the gym but anything that raises your heart rate and gives you a warm glow is beneficial.
  • Rather than counting Calories think about proportion of foods on your plate. If you are trying to lose weight then make sure half of your plate at mealtimes is made up of vegetables and salad, a quarter should be carbohydrate such as potato, rice, quinoa, pasta etc. and a quarter should be protein such as lean red meat, poultry, fish or pulses.
  • Don’t let yourself go thirsty! If you struggle to drink enough non caffeinated fluid why don’t you treat yourself to a new spangly water bottle that can go everywhere with you? Or setting a reminder on your phone every hour to drink another 150mls? You should be aiming for around 2 Litres of water or herbal tea per day. Staying hydrated will help keep your body from mistaking thirst for hunger; it will also help with concentration and gut function.
  • Plan your meals. Planning your meals in advance will help you make the right choices rather than raiding the fridge or the supermarket shelves when you are starving! Meal preparation can also go a long way in helping you stick to your good intentions so when you’re cooking try and prepare extra to stock up your freezer so when you are too frazzled to cook from scratch you have something nutritious to hand.

 

 

…And don’t forget to allow yourself a little treat, as long as it is a small portion, something sweet can help stop you feeling deprived and therefore you are more likely to stick to your plan…pass the OHSO!

 

Struggling to find a new years’ resolution you can stick to?

Why don’t you try putting aside a time once a week for ‘me time’. Time out to do something that you enjoy that is just for you is important for self-care and mental health. ..I like to call this an ‘Oasis’ in the busy week. ..Lowering stress is so important for overall health and specifically for gut health!