Health & Beauty
by Aspect County

Feeling Festive, The Healthy Way

As we enter December, for many it is a time of indulgence, feasting and festive cheer as we join with friends and family in spreading Christmas joy, and later in the month welcoming the start of a new year. Perhaps you have worked hard all year keeping your body fighting fit by following a healthy eating and fitness plan or, you’re looking to start 2023 with a much healthier lifestyle, either way this month and all the indulgence it brings needn’t be your downfall. You can still party and look after your body at the same time, it’s about finding the right balance, and Mick Rolton from Gym Design & Supply, gives us some guidance on how to do this.

Party prep
Nobody is saying that it’ll be easy to resist all the delicious food and indulgent drinks on offer at a party but try to resist temptation and be mindful to eat and drink as healthy as possible. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day, to keep you well hydrated, and a light low-carb meal before you leave home (unless dinner is offered at the party) will help suppress your appetite and stop the hunger pangs during the evening where you are tempted to make poor food and drink choices. 

Mick’s top tips:
• Before heading out, drink a large glass of water with a tiny pinch of sea salt in.
• If it’s an evening soirée, get there early it minimises the chances of you staying out all night. 

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Stand up to temptation and keep on your feet
If you can, ditch the car and public transport and walk to and from the event. If it’s not possible to do so for the entire journey, then hop off the bus or tube one stop earlier or park a block away from the location and get you party feet walking. A brisk 10-minute walk has lots of health benefits and counts towards your recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. 

And when you’re at the party get mingling. Whether it’s standing, walking, or dancing, keep sitting to a minimum. Standing requires more effort and energy than sitting which means that more calories are burnt. 

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It’s party time
You can still have a great time, but just remember to consume in moderation and the better you will feel for it. Now go have some fun! 

The good stuff:
• Crudities (celery, carrots, cucumber) – these party staples are low in calories, high in fibre and can feel filling.

• Dips – of course you can dip in BUT go for the homemade and ideally low-fat options.

• Canapes – protein-based offerings, such as lean meat and fish will make you feel fuller compared to carb-based options.

• Cheese and nuts – eating small amounts in moderation, is ok, just be aware the fat and salt content is high.

The bad:
• Alcohol – not only is it calorific and high in sugar, but it will also increase your appetite and stop your body from burning fat. If you can’t resist alcohol for the nigth, then opt for low calorie mixers and for every alcoholic drink, drink a glass of water.

• Bread and crackers – high in calories, low in nutrients.

• Crisps – these little goodies are not so good for you. The combination of carbs and fat makes you feel hungrier and wanting more.

• Fatty meat – high in calories and bad for your heart.

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A night to remember
If you have stayed away from or have at least reduced the amount of alcohol you have consumed then it most definitely will be a night to remember because we all know that too much alcohol can cause a lapse in memory and a very fuzzy head the next day. So with little or no alcohol, healthy snacks, plenty of mingling on your feet, and the walk home, you’ll not only have had a great night but you’ll be feeling good and be able to recall it the next day too. 

Good night
No matter how tired you are, before your head hits the pillow, drink a pint of water with either a vitamin tablet or citrus slice and pinch of sea salt. Repeat the following morning, when you wake up, your body will thank you for it. Remember with late nights, the earlier you go to bed, the better you will feel as your body does its repair from 10:00pm to 6:00am (physical repair – 10:00pm to 2:00am; mental repair 2:00am to 6:00am). The damage you do is exponential the later you go to bed!

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Phys and fizz
It’s always good to stick to a rounded exercise routine with a balance of cardio and strength-building exercises but your time might be even more limited during the festive season, or you might just be feeling too tired as you’re on a break from work and the kids are on holiday. It really is important to keep moving and often though. It doesn’t need to be a long session, even just a gently bike ride or walk in the fresh air will really help – especially if you are feeling worse for wear, you’ll be surprised how much better you feel.

• Remember, keep the fizz and rich food to a minimum, give your body the break it also deserves!

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Gym Design & Supply offers 20 years of experience with an exclusive personal service and a wide range of options with regard to helping you create your dream gym space.