As fantastic as Christmas can be we tend to over indulge over the festive season because everyone is offering you food constantly. It's impossible to say no because "It's Christmas". Do you know what, that's fine! Enjoy yourself, it's a well earned break at the end of the year. A time of stress but also community, family and giving. It wouldn't be Christmas without a cheeseboard or four. Would it?
But once Christmas is out of the way, you're probably already thinking about how to eat healthier in 2019. I have compiled some great tips which I hope will help you to eat a more-balanced diet to help promote healthiness and happiness!
Fruit and veg are your friends
The recommended amount of fruit and veg to consume a day as you know is five-portions. Try and spread these out during the day. Get a portion in with each meal. It's a lot easier than it sounds.
- Throw some fruit in your cereal. Chop a banana. Add some blueberries.
- Have a smoothie. Remember smoothies can only ever account for one of your five portions a day.
- Find your soul-mate vegetable or vegetables which you can get addicted to. It's like dating, try as much as you can until you end up with your Prince Charming or cabbage.
Make your own fizzy drinks
With the best will in the world, you're going to crave a nice refreshing fizzy drink at times. That's fine. The problem, as we all know, is that the fizzy drink giants pump them full of sugar and preservatives. Even "diet" drinks have a lot of things you want to avoid.
- Soda and lime! It's a classic and you forget how good it is.
- Make your own drinks, there's plenty of recipes online which I'm going to try this year.
- If you're feeling fancy check out organic fizzy drinks, they might be a little more expensive than others but the natural sugars and no nasty additives give them such a great taste.
Put down the salt
We all know it can raise your blood pressure which can lead to some really nasty things like heart disease and ultimately a stroke. Not only this but salt makes you retain water and sap your energy!
- Most of the salt you eat is probably ALREADY in your food, not you adding it. So do some label checking and make sure you look for low salt and low sodium options.
- If you're a meat eater, cured meats are chockablock full of salt. Eat less of them, or smaller portion when you do.
- Watch out for sauces! Table sauces such as ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard and others can be the worst offenders for high-salt content.
Second chances - revisit foods you "don't like"
Sometimes it's easy to convince yourself you don't like foods. This might be because you had them once and they were poorly prepared. You might be missing out on a treasure trove of foods you actually do like if you try them prepared in different ways.
- Give foods a second chance. You might love olives now but hated them when you were younger. Your tastes change over time.
- You only live once - imagine getting into old age and trying something again to realise you love it and wish you'd eaten a lot more of it.
- Different cuisines can make all the difference. Tandoori lamb is not the same as a traditional lamb shank. Experiment with flavours and cuisines.
Let us know what foods you love or dislike and what you're going to try in 2019 as part of a healthy and balanced diet.