Healthy Eating Tips During Christmas
Weight Management

What’s In Your Christmas Dinner?


20 December 2015


Christmas is a beautiful time of the year enjoyed by many. Many take this festive season as the time to wrap up the year with friends, family and colleagues which makes December a month of many get-togethers filled with delicious food and drinks.

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As with all festive seasons, there may be the tendency to overindulge on the delicious offerings. As it may not feel very festive having to curb your eating and drinking, we have come up with an easy reference guide below to help you with your choices.

Where do the calories come from?

Turkey (per slice) 100
Gravy (1 serve, ½ cup) 60
Roast potatoes (1 medium) 200
Roast vegetables with olive oil (1 cup) 115
Brussel sprouts (1 cup) 40
Cranberry sauce (1 serve, approx. 60g) 85
Bread sauce (1 serve, approx. 50g) 150
Mince pies (1 pie) 220
Christmas pudding (1 serve, approx. 50g) 185
Brandy butter (1 serve, 15g) 80
Custard (1 serve, 50g) 175
Beer (1 pint) 180
Champagne (1 glass, 175ml) 135
Red wine (1 glass, 175ml) 125
White wine (1 glass, 175ml) 135

*Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation.

A study by found on average that Christmas meals total about 3000 calories with US, UK and Ireland ranking in the top 3. This exceeds the recommended daily intake for both men (2500 calories) and women (2000 calories). Add this to all the other celebrations that have taken place in the month of December and it’s no surprise that people put on a few kilos, making the top new year’s resolution to lose weight.

So instead of feeling guilty after the festivities, use these tips to eat mindfully and keep that weight in check.

Keep active

Keeping active during this busy social month and especially on Christmas day, will do you a lot of good. Start the morning and end the day with some exercise – even a 30-minute walk can lower your blood glucose and help your body process foods more efficiently without causing sugar spikes. There is a mind and body connection when you are active – the more you move and connect into this, the less you tend to eat, or rather you begin to make better food choices.

Watch your plate

There’s a psychology behind filling your plate with food – we tend to feel more satisfied when there is more food on the plate. Thus be smart how you fill your plate and fill it with vegetables.

Have smaller portions

Another way to feel satisfied is to eat slowly and this can be achieved by having a smaller serve, but allowing yourself a few servings. This way you have some time in between plates for your food to digest. Also chew your food more, at least 10-15 times with each mouthful.

Make it difficult

Lay the food on a separate table so that you don’t sit in front of the food. This will make the food not as easily accessible and you won’t be tempted to continually fill up your plate.

Drink water

Start your meal with a big glass of water, and sip water throughout, especially if you are drinking alcohol.

Reduce alcohol intake

A lot of the calories comes from alcohol. These are empty calories which the body does not use as fuel. Because the body wants to get rid of the alcohol it prioritises this action thus reducing the amount of fat your body burns for energy.

So instead of waking up feeling heavy, sluggish and thinking you need to go on a diet, incorporate the tips above and wake up feeling light and happy.

Have a very Merry Christmas!

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