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Say no to Holiday weight gain and hangovers

Christmas healthy food

The Holiday season rhymes with too much food and drink while we relax and have a good time at family get-togethers.  Here are a few tips and tricks to help you survive the festive season without extra pounds and hangovers.

Six ideas for avoiding excess calories

1. Prepare healthy appetizers: Make lots of healthy holiday bite size appetizers. Try Sesame Tuna Takati and Cucumber and Feta Bites or Mini Chicken Skewers with Pesto, Cranberries and Pistachios and Ravioli, Cherry Tomato, and Parmesan Skewers from Ricardo.

2. Savour slowly: Eat fast and you’ll overeat. Savour and chew each morsel for a long time and you’ll feel satisfied much sooner.

3. Avoid non-stop munching: Eat only once (and for all). If you munch throughout the entire evening, the calories will pile up without your ever feeling satisfied. Once you’ve finished your plate, leave the table to avoid non-stop nibbling.

4. Drink to your health: Enjoy one or two glasses of wine or champagne, but make sure you are well hydrated by drinking a large glass of water between each alcoholic beverage. This will also help reduce your appetite and alcohol consumption. Avoid opening the bottles of wine too long before the meal starts.

5. Be active during the Holidays: Stand up to chat, dance, and take short walks during the festivities. Try not to skip your training sessions.

6. Don’t keep the leftovers: If you are hosting, invite your guests to take the leftovers home. Or if you are the guest, decline to take home leftovers of rich foods. Partaking in a feast is fine, but two feasts is one too many!

Four tips for hangover relief

1. Eat light: Avoid fatty foods; they aren’t good for your liver. Go for good old chicken noodle soup―and veggies. Chicken noodle soup contains a lot of salt and will provide the sodium required for rehydration after alcohol-induced dehydration.

2. Have honey toast and banana for breakfast: Research shows that honey accelerates alcohol elimination and reduces hangover symptoms. As for banana, being rich in potassium, it assists in electrolyte replenishment.

3. Have a sports drink: Sports drinks too, like Gatorade, help replenish fluids and electrolytes.

4. Drink a peppermint- or ginger-flavoured herbal tea: Peppermint has digestive properties and ginger reduces nausea.

So what are your tips for curbing calories and relieving hangovers?

By Karine Séguin, nutritionist

Reference
Passeport santé. (2008). Gueule de bois. On line. <http://www.passeportsante.net/fr/Actualites/Dossiers/Fiche.aspx?doc=gueule_bois_do>. Page consulted on Novembre 15, 2014

Author
Karine Séguin, Dt.P.

Holder of a degree in nutrition from McGill University, and member of the Ordre professionnel des diététistes du Québec, Karine is currently pursuing a specialist diploma in sports nutrition with the International Olympic Committee. She has been part of the Nautilus Plus team since March 2012. Karine has demonstrated exemplary dedication in her own physical preparation by regularly training in our centers, and has completed the Montreal half-marathon in 2013. Passionate about her work, her objective is to ensure the success of everyone, and motivate you to adopt healthy eating habits. Whether you are picky about food, or a real food lover, Karine will get you to enjoy the pleasures of eating healthy foods that are suited to your needs, so that you can feel good about yourself, and become active!


Say no to Holiday weight gain and hangoversis a post from I'm taking charge. I'm taking charge is a blog that aims to help people in their journey to fitness through articles on training, nutrition, motivation, exercise and healthy recipes.
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