Beat the Holiday Bulge

Beat the Holiday Bulge

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Having a good time is the main intention behind taking a holiday, and this often means indulging in heavy food and drinks. But coming home bloated, overweight and unhealthy will only make you feel like you need another holiday. The following tips will help you keep in tip top shape and avoid those regretful feelings.

Don’t sacrifice on exercise
If you are travelling locally, make sure that your gym contract is activated for the city you are visiting. Most hotels have at least basic gym facilities now days. Choose high energy out-door activities, like hiking, swimming or water sports. Even a good old walk through a local market or shopping centre is good exercise (especially if you carry around some heavy shopping bags too). Remember, the more exercise you do, the more over-eating you can get away with. Don’t forget to pack some running or walking shoes, or maybe even your yoga mat.

Up the Water
This is especially important if you are travelling to hot climates or spending lots of time in the sun. Water is one of the single most important nutrients for a healthy weight and sacrificing on intake could cause you to gain.

Eat a good breakfast
Most hotels serve a big breakfast where you’ll have lots of healthy choices. Always go for some fresh fruit in the mornings, with a wholegrain cereal or porridge and yogurt. Eggs on wholegrain toast is also a good choice (poached or boiled eggs are best). Go easy on the muesli as this tends to be high in fat and sugar. If pastries for breakfast are your thing, limit these to a couple of incidences per week max.

Order Out Smartly

Most restaurants do not base their menu choices on what’s healthy, but rather on what’s tasty- and this often means rich, creamy sauces. If you are near the coast, sample some of the local fish and seafood. Always order your fish dry-grilled or Cajun style, without the lemon butter sauce. Sushi is also a great choice. Steaks should be limited and always go for the smaller option, like a minute or ladies’ steak. Grilled chicken breasts or ostrich steaks are a less fatty option than beef steaks or lamb. Regarding side orders- go easy on the chips, onion rings and creamed spinach and rather opt for a baked potato minus the sour cream, or even better for steamed vegetables or salad. Pasta should always be ordered as a half portion with a tomato base. Take out foods should be kept to a minimum. If you must indulge, why not save on some kilojoules and try a plain chicken burger instead of a regular burger with chips?

Mind Your Liquor
Alcohol is a concentrated kilojoule source and can affect your weight if you over-indulge. If you do drink, choose mixers with soda water instead of juices, cocktails and sugary fizzy drinks. Dry wines are preferable to sweet wines, which contain more kilojoules. Drinking can also take its toll on your liver, leaving you sluggish and bloated.

Become a Health Conscious Cook
If the holiday event is at your home, consider preparing dishes that require more nutritious ingredients and healthier cooking methods. Be aware of how you use fat, sugar, starch and salt. Include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables in your menus. Use plain fat-free yogurt instead of cream. Don’t fry anything. Rather grill, bake, steam and boil. Use lemon or lemon juice, herbs and spices for flavor. Garlic and crushed red pepper give most dishes flavor and character. For dessert, try fresh fruit salad with low kilojoule jellies and sorbets.

Indulge, don’t binge
There is a big difference between indulging (which involves a subtle enjoyment) and bingeing (which indicates a type of gluttony). Choose your indulgences carefully. If crème brulee is simply your favourite, then by all means indulge in a dessert after dinner. But if you’re just eating for the sake of it and not deriving much pleasure- its better to stay away. Remember- everything in moderation.

For more health and wellness advice visit Ashleigh’s website by following the links alongside.

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