I might be stating the obvious, but the festive season is no time to start a diet. Christmas, of course, is a great time to relax and enjoy good food with your nearest and dearest. One of my earliest Christmas memories is making shortbread with my mum and grandma – a food I love and enjoy to this very day.
We all have a favourite festive food that brings back fond childhood memories, so why do so many of us feel guilty when eating these same foods at Christmas? Or, how often have you overeaten at Christmas-time to the point where you feel sick, only to swear that your diet starts tomorrow?
Well, the good news is that it’s okay to enjoy all your favourite Christmas foods — provided you do it ‘mindfully’. Mindful eating is a flexible approach to food that focuses on you tuning in to your hunger and fullness cues, without putting into place strict food rules. It’s about telling yourself you can eat or drink whatever you want, but asking yourself whether you really feel like it.
Here are my top three tips to enjoy a merry, mindful Christmas:
Start the day with a healthy, balanced breakfast so that you don’t arrive at Christmas lunch totally famished.
Scan the buffet and choose the items you’ll really enjoy, rather than the first food you see.
Sit down when you eat and truly savour your food — there’s no rush, it’s Christmas, after all!
You can read more about mindful eating in the December issue of Healthy Food Guide magazine – on sale now!
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