From early December through New Year’s Day, social calendars are packed with holiday celebrations, annual traditions and festive meals with family and friends. And while you may enter the season with a healthy mindset, all it takes is a couple of parties spent nibbling on crudites for those Christmas cookies begin to look very appetizing.
Everyone has their diet slip-ups, especially during the holidays and as tempting as that fourth glass of rum and eggnog may be, here’s our Post-Holiday Clean Eating Plan for starting 2015 with a healthy (and satisfying) bang.
Avoid Deprivation: Many people make the mistake of eating too little during their post-holiday cleanse, which often results in extreme cravings and binges. It sounds indulgent to focus on food, but doing so will help in planning meals and emphasizes the good foods that can be eaten over the ones that should be avoided.
Eat Breakfast: Healthy morning meals can prevent overeating later in the day. Breakfast should consist of approximately 300 to 350 calories. Here are a few sample recipes, each of which can be paired with a side of fruit:
Detox: After a few weeks of carbohydrate, fat and sugar overload, the body is likely feeling overwhelmed and bloated with excess water. To eliminate this puffiness, eat plenty of healthy fats and proteins while staying hydrated and cut back on carbs to help rid the body of unneeded water. Check out these ideas for recipe inspiration:
Nourish: It’s time to restore all of the vitamins and minerals that were likely ignored during holiday festivities. Cucumber, lettuce, celery, grapefruit, kale and cantaloupe all contain valuable nutrients. Grapes and coconut water contain potassium, which will also help eliminate bloat and promote kidney function.
Sweat: There’s a reason the gym gets so crowded come January 1 (besides the start of New Years resolutions). Exercising once a day can help burn off all of the excess fat that was gained during the holidays. Don’t try to undo all the damage with one session, but find a truly enjoyable activity to make exercise fun.
Ignore the Scale: Nothing good can come from stepping on the scale after the holidays. Instead of doing something that will only cause discouragement, focus on looking and feeling better each day.