Christmas is just around the corner, and is often the time of year for a little more indulgence than normal. Even for those with tip-top digestion this can mean feeling a little more bloated and uncomfortable than usual. Read on for my top tips to survive the Christmas period feeling good.
- Stay tuned to your hunger signals: Think about your hunger on a scale between 1 (very hungry) and 10 (couldn’t eat another thing). Aim to stay between 3 and 7 at all times, so that you neither feel extremely hungry, not uncomfortably full.
- Remember the 80:20 rule: So 80% of the time fill your plate with ‘healthy’ foods – vegetables (carrots, sprouts and red cabbage), proteins (turkey) and some carbs (roast potatoes) – and save a guilt free 20% to indulge in Christmas pudding and custard!
- Leave space between meals: Ideally 4-5 hours between meals if possible, so that you can fully digest and absorb one meal before tucking into the next. This will allow your digestion the time it needs to work optimally.
- Keep an eye on portion sizes: You can always come back for seconds, but starting with no more food on your plate than you would usually eat can be a good place to start.
- Keep hydrated: With central heating, log fires and maybe a little more alcohol than usual, it’s easy to get dehydrated. Check out the key signs to look for here, and aim for 1.5 to 2 litres of water or herbal teas each day.
- And lastly – have fun! Stress is a major factor in IBS and other digestive complaints. Laughing and having fun with friends and family can be just the antidote that’s needed.