How to enjoy Christmas weekend?
The Christmas season is a special time of year. There are some people who love this time and get caught up in the Christmas festivities, whilst others dislike it. Christmas is associated with grand decorations, spending time with family and loved one, preparing festive treats. In today’s blog, we will give you some tips on how we like to celebrate this festive time!
Make a food shopping list
The time before Christmas is often a very busy time, and you will no doubt be getting ready for the festive celebrations by visiting your local supermarket or ordering online. Before shopping, take some time to write down a list of all the items you need to buy – food and non-food related, to ensure you are organised and don’t have to go back for the forgotten items! Don’t forget some of the trimmings that make the Christmas meal special, and if you are doing some holiday baking, do you need any special ingredients?
Enjoying foods mindfully
At this time of the year, we are spoilt with the food and drink options. It’s tempting to go a little overboard with what we buy and choose to have, but try to take a step back to ask yourself – what do you really want? This will help you not only to spend less overall and reduce food waste, but also really enjoy foods and drinks that make you happy and bring joy.
When you eat these foods or have the drinks, try to take your time to savour them without distraction, so that you really feel satisfied and are less tempted to overeat, or feel out of control.
Get your home ready for Christmas
The smell of the Christmas tree, the lights or the presents under the tree are some of the few decorative elements that make our home seem even cosier. Many families hang socks on the fireplace in which they place sweets. Hanging lights in front of the house will certainly make the house look special from the outside. Children can make a snowman if we are lucky to get snow over the Christmas weekend!
Be sure to stay hydrated!
In between all the mulled wines, glasses of prosecco or cocktails, be sure to keep well hydrated with water. Not only will this slow down the alcohol intake, but water is incredibly important for the body, and you will feel better for it!
Spend time with family and friends
December is the month that many spend with our loved ones. Some non-food related activities you could do is to go out for a walk to see the decorations around town, or how about ice-skating? You can play board games or organise watching a Christmas movie night. Singing carols together is also great fun. For a few festive treats, you can bake cookies or make a gingerbread house – turn this into a little competition to see who can make the prettiest gingerbread house!
Don’t forget sick, elderly and people in need
We associate Christmas time with joy, happiness and being with loved ones. Unfortunately, there are those who will spend Christmas alone. Let us not forget them! Let’s see if there are people in need in our neighbourhood. Organise a Christmas food drive for the lonely and needy, or a collection for gifts for children or the elderly. When cooking festive meals, are there any leftovers you can give away that others will appreciate? This will give everyone the opportunity to celebrate this special time of year.
Don’t forget vegetables and fruit on your Christmas menu
Vegetables and fruit are a valuable source of many great nutrients, including polyphenols, which play important roles in the human body. In addition, vegetables and fruit are a valuable source of fibre. Fibre plays a very important role in the body, for example by promoting intestinal function and the secretion of gastric juices and preventing constipation. Do not forget to include some sources on Christmas, such as carrots, parsnips, and our favourite – Brussels sprouts! Maybe include some fruit with the cheese board such as berries, grapes and peach. Delicious!
Let’s remember that the Christmas season is a magical time, full of a variety of tasty dishes. To avoid feeling overly full and sluggish after eating, incorporate some movement that feels good. This can be something like a short walk or bike ride around the park or take the dogs out for a stretch whilst you enjoy some fresh air!
By Martyna Slotwinska, dietetic intern, revised by Reema Patel, registered dietitian.