It’s Celebration time!

How to save your waistline

There are many times throughout the year when we put on our party hats or we get together with family and friends to celebrate special days, birthdays and the other milestones of life.

You may find yourself at parties, lunches and dinners with friends, or perhaps just a few drinks with colleagues after a hard days work. These are the times when you will probably eat and drink a lot more than usual.  Most social gatherings revolve around food and that’s okay. It’s fun to interact with friends while tasting foods you wouldn’t normally eat.

When you add in things like boxes of chocolates for Valentine’s Day, Easter eggs, Mother’s Day goodies and even the boxes of Cadbury Favourites which their ads tell us are “what to bring when you’re told not to bring anything”, it often becomes much harder to keep yourself on the straight and narrow as far as healthy eating goes.

It is possible to enjoy yourself without going overboard; just remember that moderation is the key!

Here are our top tips:

  • Eat healthy foods 90 percent of the time.  If you are planning on going out for dinner, eat a healthy breakfast and lunch.  Don’t fast or under eat all day if you plan on going out at night.  This will just make you eat too fast and too much.  It will be much harder to realise you’ve had enough food and stop eating.
  • Fill up on protein.  Of the three main nutrients: carbohydrate, protein and fat, it is protein that makes you feel full for longest.  Eating protein actually inhibits the release of hunger hormones by your stomach that normally travel to your brain and tell you to eat.  Good sources of protein include seafood, poultry, eggs, red meat, nuts, seeds, legumes and dairy products.  Eating some protein at each meal and snack will leave you far less hungry throughout the day.  Therefore you’ll be less likely to over eat junk.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.  Often you may think you’re hungry but you’re really just thirsty instead.
  • If you are going to a friend’s house for a meal, or a work function, bring a plate of healthy food that you can eat.  That way there is guaranteed to be something healthy and low in calories for you to eat.  You can certainly sample other foods, but this way 100 percent of what you eat won’t be junk food.
  • Try to avoid drinking too much alcohol.  It lowers inhibitions and it also lowers your resolve to stay away from unhealthy food.No matter how busy you are, you must do some exercise.  You don’t have to exercise seven days a week, but some days of the week you have a little more spare time than other days – exercise then.  Even a 20 minute walk is beneficial.  If you have a dog, don’t neglect walking it.
  • Minimise your exposure to food.  If you see it you’ll want to eat it.  At a party, once you have put some food on your plate, move away from the food table.  At home keep snacks in cupboards, away from view.  Put tempting foods on very high or very low shelves; not directly at eye level.  You don’t want those biscuits calling your name every time you open the cupboard.
  • Eat slowly.  This rule applies at all times of the year.  The more slowly you eat, the more you’ll enjoy your meal and the less likely you will be to over eat.  If you really love cake, pudding or pastries, act like you do – eat them slowly and savour every bite.  Don’t gobble them down without even tasting them.
  • You may find it helpful to take a supplement which helps to maintain blood glucose levels. This will help curb cravings for both savoury and sweet carbohydrates.
  • Another suggestion is to enjoy a Synd X protein shake or small QuickLoss shake prior to leaving for your party or outing – this little trick can make a huge difference to how much party type food (chips, dips, lollies, party pies and sausage rolls etc) that you ingest.
  • Grab a Cabot Health Low Carb bar before you hit the party – again, this will help you to control your snacking on all that party food.