Nutritionist decodes your Christmas cravings

Nutritionist decodes your Christmas cravings

Eat three balanced meals a day Missing meals because you’re worried about your waistline or ate a lot the night bef

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Eat three balanced meals a day 

Missing meals because you’re worried about your waistline or ate a lot the night before can actually mean you end up eating more overall by grazing on junk. 

More sugar cravings are also common, and you may struggle to turn down that 10th deep fried canapé!

Balance meals with protein 

It will help you stay fuller for longer and stop you devouring a selection box. Prawns, chicken, eggs, smoked salmon, ham, beans or lentils should always form 25 per cent of your plate. 

Nuts and seeds are also brilliant for adding to meals to increase protein fibre, healthy fats and essential nutrients, and are super suck and easy.

Fill up on vegetable side dishes 

This will increase nutrient content and fibre in the diet which is important for energy, immunity, detoxification and skin. 

You can also fill up on super nutrient dense Christmas favourites such as red cabbage and carrots, all of which contain vitamin C, A, B vitamins, polyphenol antioxidants and magnesium rather than carb loaded roast potatoes and stuffing, or sausages and meat.

Be prepared if you suffer from intolerances 

If you’re gluten or dairy-free and struggle to stick to it over Christmas then to avoid feeling lousy, you need to be prepared. 

This can sometimes mean eating dinner before you head out to drinks parties where you aren’t able to be sure what’s in the food on offer, or telling your host ahead of time what your dietary requirements are. 

Most restaurants these days cater to all allergies of all kinds, so you just need to ring ahead and inform them. 

Spread out the parties 

If you find peer pressure is driving your consumption and overindulgence, then plan your diary so that you aren’t back-to-back and have at least one night off each week.

If you have to drink, but know you will struggle with the aftermath, then try to go for polyphenol rich red wine, spritzers or white spirits with soda and lime, rather than sweet cocktails or sugary mixers. 

Stay hydrated with water and herbal teas over the day before and after, don’t drink on an empty stomach and aim to eat plenty of folic acid the next day from colourful veggies to support your liver.

Start the day with a smoothie 

If you know you won’t be able to get goodness into your diet owing to Christmas parties or work events then try adding a smoothie into your morning regime as a super-fast way to get as much fibre and good nutrition into your body in the morning. 

Try adding kale, berries, banana, avocado (all of which can be frozen ahead of time) flaxseed, brazil nuts and oat milk.

Get to know your genetics 

All of us process food differently and have different dietary requirements, however with so much confusing information online it is often hard to work out what suits you. 

Getting more access to your genetic information and understanding what that information means, not only provides insights that can help you identify what makes you tick so that you can make informed decisions about your dietary needs, but also creates the motivation to make changes and stick to them so you can feel your best

Get creative with canapés 

They don’t just have to be deep fried, come in pastry, or be super meaty, there are tonnes of ideas for delicious yet nutritious options with seafood, vegetables and dips and often these are just as popular as the more traditional options – get creative!

Stock up on healthier sweet treats

Nut and honey bars, cacao protein bars, dark chocolate dipped Brazil Nuts and almond-meal biscuits are easy options you can pick up from most health food stores or supermarkets.