There is only two more sleeps to go until the big day, everybody is getting firmly into the Christmas spirit. With this time of year comes Christmas parties as friends and families descend upon us. We don’t want to sacrifice all our hard work but remember it is Christmas after all!
Take a look at a previous post on this blog, Festive Foods, to see what traditional Christmas foods can still be enjoyed at this time of year, without ruining 12 months of hardwork.
It isn’t just what we eat that we should be wary of though – how we cook the ingredients determines exactly how healthy our meals are!
When it comes to the Christmas bird the important thing is to make sure you have defrosted it correctly. What is the point in watching what you eat over Christmas if you risk getting food poisoning, which could prevent you getting back in the gym for weeks? So keep the turkey away from all your other foods and regularly pour away any liquids that appear when defrosting.
As for when it comes to eating it, well the skin is where a lot of the fat is, so try to avoid eating it. Then the only other thing to be aware of is to try and stick to the lighter meat off the breast, rather than the darker, fatty meat found in the wings and thighs.
Vegetables and Potatoes
Vegetables are great for us and potatoes are a virtually fat-free source of good carbohydrates. But they both can become worse for us, depending on how they are cooked.
So you can opt for baked potatoes instead of roasted ones to minus some calories and flavour your vegetables with herbs or lemon juice, rather than butter.
A lot of shop bought gravies can be high in both fat and salt. Maybe try making your own gravy using your meat juices and try to avoid adding extra salt.
There is all sorts of other things that you can do to try and keep the calories down during the festive period, for example:
- Make yourself delicious winter soups using healthy ingredients like lentils, apples and parsnips
- Prepare winter salads with turkey, chicken and cranberries
- Try a fruit based stuffing using oranges and chestnuts to get plenty of potassium
There is so much that you can do to make your Christmas dinner that bit healthier if you really want to. But just remember, this time comes around once a year and one meal won’t determine your overall success. If you can’t be a little bit naughty at Christmas, when can you?
I’m not saying you should abandon all your good habits but remember that a cheat meal can be invaluable. So make sure above all else that you just enjoy yourself this Christmas. If you decide to indulge in roast potatoes and a bit of Christmas pudding, don’t feel guilty about it!
Take this time to relax and enjoy the time spent with loved ones. And if you find that you have been a little bit mischievous, just use the time after Christmas to put in a bit of extra effort and get back into your normal routine!
Have a wonderful Christmas and above everything else make sure you stay safe!