How to indulge without going overboard
There’s something about December that makes us want to dive into sangrias, chocolate cakes and cinnamon swirls. It probably has something to do with the fact that temptation levels soar in this last month of the year what with endless parties, weddings and cocktail evenings. We’re not saying you should lock yourself in a cave, but here are six diet mistakes to avoid so that you stay svelte and sexy till the end of the party season.
Don’t save up your calories
Trying to be virtuous and skipping lunch before a big evening do might seem like a good idea but it will boomerang on you. The hungrier you are the lower your self-control and the more likely you are to binge eat every fatty snack in sight the minute you hit the party. Instead eat healthy through the day and include protein and fiber rich snacks like cottage cheese or hummus and veggie sticks. This way you can actually peck daintily at the wares on display later.
Don’t eat the cookies just because they’re there
Who can resist chocolate, pies, cakes and cookies? But just because you’re neck deep in these carb rich treats doesn’t mean you should gobble them up. Remember your calories should be worth it, so take a trial bite and indulge only if that chocolate cake is really too divine to resist, not because it happens to be there. Once you’ve made up your mind to indulge, don’t feel guilty. Enjoy what you eat and plan how you’re going to work it off later.
Wait a while
Studies show that it takes a minimum 20 minutes for your brain to signal that your tummy is full. So if you launch full tilt into a plate of fried chicken or spring rolls, chances are you’re going to over eat till you feel like you’re going to explode because your body hasn’t had time to register you’re full. So start savouring your meal, take small bits, chew thoroughly and enjoy the conversation. Finish what’s on your plate, take a few minutes and only then head to the buffet table if you’re still feeling hungry.
Alternate between alcohol and water
We live in an instant world and there’s always this compulsion to glug down alcohol till you feel the buzz. But often it’s too late and you end up eating way more than you should (alcohol dulls the food center in your brain) and end up with an awful hangover the next morning. Alternating each glass of bubbly with a glass of water will not just make you last longer, it’ll keep you full so you won’t over-do cheesy dips and desserts. Another plus: you’ll consume fewer alcohol calories; a glass of wine has about 120 calories.
Don’t skimp on sleep
No getting enough zzzs can mess with your metabolism, piling on the pounds. It’s not a myth! Levels of Ghrelin the hormone that tells you when you’re hungry increases when you don’t get enough sleep while Leptin the hormone that suppresses appetite, decreases. Aim to get seven to eight hours of shut eye every night to stay slim and make healthy food choices.
Don’t skip your workout (too often)
Between all the late nights, work and partying, chances are the first thing to get sacrificed is your a.m. workout routine. And once that discipline goes, you’re more likely to graze, throw in the towel and resign yourself to becoming a couch potato. This is the time to move more than ever! Especially since you’re going to be consuming more calories than you would in the non-holiday season. So even if it’s just a 30-minute workout, be diligent about fitting it in every chance you can.
Comment below and let us know how you embraced the berry trend.