The festive season is well and truly upon us and whilst we all set our sights on a happier and healthier new year, putting in the ground work before the end of the year, will only have you kicking some serious goals come January 1st. Below I have compiled a list of my tips and tricks to surviving the festive season.
TIP #1 – DRINK MORE WATER
To kick things off, we tackle the good old H2O. It is so important to stay hydrated, not just this festive season, but every other day in between!
Your body is composed of about 60% water and the process in which your water consumption affects include digestion, absorption, circulation, creation of saliva, transportation of nutrients, and maintenance of body temperature. Without water, these systems just don’t function properly. Staying hydrated is also a great way to help manage the amount of food and alcohol you consume – more water, less of the other stuff. It will also help your summer skin glow!
During the seasonal festivities water is usually the last thing on anyone’s mind, so lets make it appealing. Try adding seasonal fruits, slices of lemon or lime, and various herbs to your water jug and place it on the table, front and centre (my favourite additions are listed here). It looks very festive and will have guests reaching for the jug in no time. An added bonus: fruits like lemon juice aid in digestion!
TIP #2 – PRESERVATIVE FREE ALCOHOL
FACT: Australian laws currently permit the use of 19 listed additives and 37 different processing aids in wine manufacturing. These can include, but are not limited to:
– 220 Sulphur dioxide
– 221 Sodium sulphite
– 222 Sodium bisulphite
– 223 Sodium metabisulphite
– 224 Potassium metabisulphite
– 225 Potassium sulphite
– 228 Potassium bisulphite
Ingredients that can be used but are not required to be listed on the ingredients list:
– Artificial yeasts
– Fish bladder extract
White wine also contains a much higher level of preservatives and additives than red wine.
In yet another attempt to avoid preservatives this festive season, why not switch your standard glass of wine or beer of choice for an organic or biodynamic preservative free variety. Dan Murphy’s stock a great range of organic, preservative free wines and beer online and in-store. I have also found a number of great preservative free wine selections at smaller boutique cellars and health food stores.
Please note: Due to loop holes in marketing laws, organic does not mean preservative free. In this instance, when given the choice opt for a preservative free wine instead.
If you love beer but know your gluten intolerant, check out my favourite gluten free beers here.
TIP #3 SKIP THE PACKAGED DIPS
Dips are always on the table come Christmas celebrations and are often full of nasty preservatives, additives, vegetable oils and added flavours. Making your own dips will switch those added nasties for the goodness of fresh vegetables, vitamins, minerals and healthy fats. Think Guacamole! Roast Pumpkin & Cashew Dip & more. If you’re pushed for time, Yumi do a great range of gluten and dairy free dips at the supermarket.
TIP #4 SWAP WHEAT CRACKERS & CHIPS FOR HEALTHIER ALTERNATIVES
Thickly cut vegetable sticks (carrot, celery, capsicum, cherry tomatoes) will pair perfectly with your home-made dips. By making the switch you are avoiding processed grains, digestion destroying gluten and a whole host of preservative and additives. This switch can also help you avoid digestive stress (reduce that bloat) and overeating by triggering the release of the body’s “I’m full” hormone, before the main meal arrives.
You can read part 2 of this post here.