Chinese New Year is just around the corner and it is the most important festival for the Chinese. According to Chinese tradition, the Chinese New Year eve is a reunion day for all family members and relatives and has their fill of the scrumptious meal of the year. The Chinese New year start of 15 days of food feasting bundle with many visitations.
During this festive period, uncontrolled or excessive eating and without exercise will lead to weigh gain. Nutrition-wise, always is a challenge during festive season. Don’t try to lose weight over the festive season. It’s going to be just about impossible! Your main aim should be to maintain your weight (using some of the tips below!)
- Eat regular meals. If you skip meals you are more tend to fill up on high fat snacks. It only takes a few of these snacks to add up to more calories than your usual meal.
- Control portions. Especially during the festive season, know that you’ll have more opportunities to eat festive snacks and desserts. You don’t have to deprive yourself, just eat smaller portions and less often.
- Avoid deep fried foods, cookies, snack, nuts are all high in fat. Choose fruit, vegetable or bread based snacks.
- Just say ‘No” to food – mentally practice strategies to decline food offers. For example: “It looks amazing but I am full” or “I tried it and it was great”.
- Chat and mingle. If you are bored at a party you’re more likely to hover around the food table or seek out the serving platter. A good conversation can distract you from the food. Avoid standing right beside the food table or bar while you’re talking.
- Consider your drinks, they can add to the calorie count very quickly. Try diluting your alcoholic drinks and be aware of how much you are actually drinking. Alternate alcoholic drinks with glasses of water and non-alcoholic choices. Remember soft drinks, juices, punches, tonic water and flavoured mineral water can all have similar calories to alcoholic drinks.
- Keep Active. If your regular exercise class stops over the Chinese New Year break, go for a walk with friends or relatives. Remember you’re aiming for 30 minutes of physical activity each day.
- Slow down. Enjoy each bite and chewing slowly. This gives your body enough time to trigger your brain that you are satisfied (not necessarily full).
- Pay attention. Do not eat in front of the TV or computer, or while standing in the kitchen or talking on the phone. When you do these things, you’re more likely to lose track of how much you’ve eaten.
If you do really overdo the festive foods or drinks, take a deep breath and start the next day afresh with healthy foods and some exercise. No fasting – just sensible eating. Remember, a few parties don’t make you overweight; it’s what you do all the other days of the year which count.