- 24 Dec
How to Enjoy Christmas Dinner Without the Regrets
Christmas can be a time of fun, family and feasting… and… when the eating is over and you’re left with heartburn and tight trousers, big regrets! But a yummy meal can easily be healthy and light with a bit of consciousness and a few adjustments.
Here are some super-simple reminders and suggestions:
1) Steam your veggies. In our household we rarely eat veggies any other way. Choose fresh, organic produce when possible and use a steamer basket so you can taste the flavors nature intended for you and your guests to enjoy. Steaming also means you are cutting out all those calories that sauces and fats add in unnecessarily
2) Cook with ghee. Clarified butter is a great alternative to lard and heavy oils. It has a high smoke point and adds a lovely nutty flavor to your cooking. Ghee also has many health properties too. It is rich in the oil soluble vitamins A and E, and also K2 and CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid). It helps with digestion and is anti-inflammtory and anti-cancer. Ghee can also aid in weight loss. Ghee is rich in medium chain fatty acids, which are absorbed directly to the liver (like carbs) and burnt as energy. The energy from these medium chain fatty acids can be used to burn other fats in the system which helps weight loss. Plus, even though ghee is made from cow’s milk, the solids and impurities have been removed so most people who are lactose or casein intolerant have no issues with ghee.
3) Go for smaller portions. When you load your plate, imagine a no-food zone, about an inch wide, around the inside edge of your plate. Put smaller portions on your plate and avoid putting anything in the no-food zone. Don’t pile things up on top of each other, but rather, lay them out side by side until you have a decent meal on your plate. This will stop your eyes winning over your stomach!
4) Eat slowly. Our brains take about 20 minutes to an hour to register that our stomachs are full, so give your body a chance to tell you it’s had enough by eating more slowly. You never know, doing this may mean you get to really taste your meal and enjoy it all the more! Only good can come out of being present and mindful.
5) Skip the bread. If there is bread with the meal, skip it and leave room for the veg and protein. This way you’re getting more of the nutrients your body wants and less of the bulky simple carbs. If you’re going to eat simple carbs, make it a dessert treat instead.
6) Go for half the dessert. If you like sweet things, by all means eat dessert, but take a half portion and, again, eat it slowly. Savor each mouthful and then sit for a while so that your body can let you know how it’s doing with all the sugar. The more conscious and caring you are with your body, the better it will feel, look and function.
7) Go for a walk. About 30 minutes your meal, take a gentle walk. A little light exercise will help you digest your food and get your metabolism working well. Taking some nice deep breaths can also make you feel alive and present with the day.
Enjoy your celebrations without the regrets. Make it a happy holiday for you AND your body!
About the Author
Justina Vail Evans
Justina is a personal development coach, speaker, award-winning author, and award-winning actor.