It may be a time to rejoice, but moderation is key!
BY SHANNON GOODFELLOW
Christmas is the time of year that’s well known for the indulgence of food and drink. Often moderation, fitness routines and healthy eating are forgotten in lieu of overeating and becoming a couch potato watching Christmas films rather than going for a walk.
While of course everyone deserves a break, your health shouldn’t be ignored at this time of year. There are a few simple steps you can take to ensure your holiday is both happy and healthy. The average Christmas dinner, turkey with all the trimmings adds up to around 1,450 calories, which is well over half the average daily allowance of 2,000 calories for women and 2,500 for men.
That is just one meal and, as I’m sure anyone will agree, the indulgence doesn’t stop after the dinner. With dessert, sweets and left overs from the original Christmas dinner, it’s plain to see how easy it is to really over-indulge in the Christmas season and on average people manage to eat 7,000 calories worth of food on Christmas Day alone, showing just how far over-indulgence goes.
The average person can gain up to 6lbs between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day which is why it’s essential to stay healthy and try to avoid this. There are steps you can take to ensure that the Christmas season isn’t too unhealthy.
Remember you don’t have to eat everything in one day! While, of course, it’s tempting to want to eat as much delicious food as you can, it’s not necessary.
If you’re feeling full it’s better to save second portions for another day and wait a while to eat dessert so that you aren’t as hungry later.
Perhaps eat lighter food beforehand if you are having a big meal later in the day. If you do over-indulge this season the best thing you can do to combat this is exercise.
I know you may not feel like it as it’s Christmas and the cold makes you reluctant to doing much, but it’s extremely beneficial to your health.
At least an hour of exercise around three times a week could ensure that any indulgences don’t have too many negative effects.
By burning calories you have more control over your weight and it greatly reduces your risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.
Exercise also helps the mind as it can boost self esteem, reduce your risk of depression and help you sleep better.
If you’re consuming alcohol this season, as I’m sure many are, make sure you drink water as well and stay hydrated.
It’s advised to drink as much as eight glasses of water a day, which equals around two litres. As excessive as it sounds, it can help boost energy and more importantly keep you hydrated and healthy.
The figures, released to Councillor Ciaran Brogan this week, show an increase of 13.3% on the previous year.