The festive season is soon upon us so we want to make sure that you enjoy a happy, healthy Christmas!


This is a time when we get together with friends, family and work colleagues in social gatherings that often start at the end of November and run through into January. It is a time of merriment, overindulgence and a challenging time to maintain a healthy diet.


There are two major areas that affect our health and wellbeing during this time of year and they are stress and diet. 

Wellness labyrinth

A lack of time and money, credit card debt and the pressure of giving can all contribute to stress during the holiday season. Stress can have a major impact on our mental and physical health from how it affects our thoughts, feelings and behaviours, to the physical impact such has high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

Traditional festive foods are often high in fat, low in nutrition and tough on the metabolism. All of this richness often triggers food intolerances so digestive issues such as bloating, cramps and gas increase. Portions are supersized, snacks are a plenty and alcohol flows a little too freely. Couple that with dark mornings, nights and a tendency to eat until you cannot move and any thought of physical activity goes out of the window.

So what can you do during this upcoming season to minimise the impact of the festivities on your health, and your waistline? 

Stress Busters:

Limit spending. Set a budget and achieve the best Christmas that you can within it. Money issues are one of the leading causes of stress during the holiday season so reduce your stress by spending less.

Do the best you can and if all else fails, go with the flow! Not everything will go to plan but don’t let any mishaps get you down. It really doesn’t matter if dinner is late, the cat knocks over the Christmas tree or the dog eats half of the Christmas joint (as happened to my Dad and his partner).

Enjoy yourself! When things get overwhelming take some time out and breathe.

Diet smarts for healthy Christmas eating:

Avoid overindulging and be conscious of your choices. Keep an eye on your portion sizes and stop eating before you are full. (You need space for pudding right?) Try choosing a smaller plate and wine glass. Really think about whether you need to go back for seconds.

Follow the 80:20 rule by eating good, healthy food 80% of the time and allow a little indulgence for the remaining 20%. If you stretch this to 60:40 on Christmas Day, forgive yourself.

Be snack savvy. Do you need a snack? Crisps, sweets, cakes and pastries are all loaded with fat, salt and sugar. Choose healthy: Make veggie sticks with healthy dips instead, eat nuts and seeds, choose dark chocolate over milk, have an apple with nut butter, blend up a smoothie, have some fruit.

Go out for a walk. Many times! All those extra calories have to go somewhere so to avoid them taking up residence on your hips or around your belly get active!

QUICK TIPS: Eat slowly. Drink water. Eat plenty of fruit and veg. Trim the fat. Use less oil for roasting. Eat breakfast. Don’t eat late. Drink less alcohol. Choose whole grains. Avoid white bread, pasta and rice. Easy on the snacks!

Xmas Worries

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