[Note from Lucy: I’m so excited to bring you this guest post today by the amazing Georgia Selih! Georgia is a regular contributor to the website High Style Life and her writing and advice is amazing! She’s a fashion and beauty blogger based in Australia and by nature is an artist, but by profession a journalist. Take it away Georgia!]
The holiday season is notorious for being the time when everyone overeats and doesn’t pay any attention to nutrition. And it’s true: when we are caught up in celebration, surrounded by friends and family, we certainly aren’t keeping track of our five per day. And that means that when the holiday euphoria passes, we are left feeling bloated and lacking energy. So what is the best way to get back on track, recharge our batteries and get rid of the toxins littering our body? The answer is simple: proper, healthy eating. And here’s how to do it.
Before we get into what you should do, it’s important to see what you shouldn’t do, and that’s punishing yourself and restricting because of what you ate during the holidays. No matter how much you ate yesterday, you need to eat today. If you start skipping and restricting, you will only create a binge cycle within your body that will disrupt your entire system. And if you are worried about the weight you put on during the holidays: it will all return to normal when you get back to your regular eating habits: no flash diets required!
Remove and portion
After the holidays, you are probably left with a lot of food in the house. Whether those are sweets, a whole roast or some sides, there’s always some leftover food, which can be very tempting. So start by giving: locate all the food that you wouldn’t normally eat outside of the holidays: sweets, foods very high in saturated fats and similar, and donate it to a local food bank. With everything that is left over, split it into two piles: one that freezes well and one that doesn’t. For the freezer-friendly group, divide the food into portions and freeze it in separate sandwich bags, labeled. For the rest, portion it and store into individual containers. This means that you will have homemade meals for every day, which will stop you both from eating it all in one sitting, and you won’t be buying processed food outside of the house.
In the period after the holidays, you want to eat as clean as possible: a lot of fresh fruits and veggies, baked proteins instead of fries, and drinking natural juices. However, we can’t always make the time to prepare our food from scratch, and in those cases, we can rely on a catering service to bring us our weekly chia pudding breakfasts, various salad lunches for every day of the week or light pastas for dinner. Ask them about their wellness or health food selection and choose something you like. If you have the time, find recipes online and in clean eating cookbooks and make something delicious for yourself.
Get the liquids in
A big part of our diets and how we feel rests on how hydrated we are. If we are dehydrated, we will feel tired, powerless, and fatigued. It also means that we can’t process foods as well, making us feel just as bloated as when we were overeating, and that we aren’t flushing the toxins we would be if we were drinking enough. But there are plenty of ways to get the liquids in besides just drinking water. Consider a nice, warm soup for lunch, or a smoothie for a snack. Make sure you’re not eating anything with too much salt, because you will retain water, and if you are buying juices in the supermarket, look at the ingredients list and find something that doesn’t have absolutely anything but fruit.
It can sometimes be hard to get back to the way we were eating before the festive days, especially if our eating habits change drastically. The best thing you can do is try to stay on a more-less normal eating plan even during the holidays, and when they pass, make sure you’re in a supportive environment and that you are surrounded by people who have a similar goal. Find coworkers at the office who want to eat healthy and have lunch with them, and ask your housemates not to bring any tempting, high-calorie foods into the house.