The silly season. It’s a time when a lot of us have work functions, family BBQs and social occasions. This increases the amount of time we are potentially away from home cooked meals, fresh produce and the regular aspects of our health-focused lifestyle.
While these social engagements can be enjoyable and nourishing if we focus on the social interaction these opportunities offer, we can come into problems if we embrace the "nothing" part of the "all or nothing" mentality. Sometimes we assume because we don't have the time energy or willpower to stick to our routine we might as well give up and eat - or drink - whatever is available.
The good news is, just a bit more caution and preparation during this time can go a long way.
Below we have some tips to help navigate this festive season, including a delicious alcohol free “mocktail”.
Tips for maintaining your health while socialising
Be Prepared - If you are going to an event offer to bring something so you know there is at least one option for you. Get a little bit fancy and make something extra special so that you know you'll want to eat it. We have lots of recipes on our blog. This will make your experience during social events so much better. It means you can actually enjoy the important bit: catching up with loved ones. You may even have some healthy converts!
Pre load - Have a protein-rich snack before you go out such as a handful of nuts / seeds, a smoothie with quality pea or whey protein in it, some of our BePure bliss balls, greek yoghurt, a hard boiled egg or some leftover meat. This will help you to avoid all the tempting food that is offered to you because your blood sugar levels will be stable.
Love your fresh salads, greens, legumes, starchy veggies, and protein. It’s also important to not be too fussy! Sometimes a party salad is not a healthy as you would like but it may be your best choice. Don’t stress or worry if the food presented is not 100% healthy. This is life! No need to be fussy because your body won’t mind a few imperfect meals here and there. My advice is to always choose the healthiest possible option- and if that is sweet potato chips or rice- then make up for it with great nutrition at another meal.
Start your day with some warm lemon water. The citric acid will jumpstart your energy and detoxification pathways.
Choose a green smoothie for breakfast after a big event. Your liver requires nutrition to do its job. Include: plenty of leafy greens, parsley, beetroot, carrot and apple in a base of coconut water (the coconut water is a great electrolyte replacer). I prefer the new blenders for this, over juicing, as the fibre is retained which also assists the bowel detoxification pathways.
Although you might not be feeling your best with reduced sleep, still plan to get to the gym. As your nervous system won’t be up for much opt for a body balance class, stretching or a very light cardio workout. The exercise will help your lymphatic system drain. Then hop in the sauna for 20 minutes, again being sure to drink plenty of water the whole time. The sauna will help the alcoholic metabolites leave your body (saving them from having to go through the liver), often you can literally smell the alcohol coming out of the skin.
Remember, the best way to support your body is with nutrients. While you are eating indulgent food or consuming alcohol it is even more important than ever to take your BePure One and Three to help support your baseline health and energy. It’s easy to forget when your routine changes, but they only work if you take them!
Tips around having a tipple
Perhaps because Christmas and New Year’s align with summer in New Zealand, as a nation we tend to drink far more over the festive season. It is best to stick to one small beverage accompanied with food if you are having a drink and to keep the days you do indulge to a minimum.
When at an event it’s best to stay away from spirits and stick to beer and wine as the lower alcohol content and increased fluid helps you stay in control of how much you are consuming. I also recommend having a glass of water on the go at the same time, so you can alternate between the alcohol beverage and the water. Throw some ice and lemon in the glass and nobody would know it’s not a vodka tonic.
Once you get home drink two glasses of water before you go to bed to help with the dehydration and reduce the symptoms of hangover the next day.
Alternatively, skip the alcohol and make yourself the kombucha-based mocktail below. You will still enjoy a refreshing drink without the side effects.
For when things come unstuck
We often hear that people suffer from stomach discomfort and bloating more so over this time.
You can help aid digestion and bloating with:
- A daily probiotic to balance gut flora really helps aid bloating. We love biokult.
- A morning shot of apple cider vinegar in warm water upon rising.
- Mint or ginger tea after meals.
- Water- 2L per day BUT not with your meals- in between the meals. Water with meals dilutes the necessary digestive juices.
Remember that above all else, the festive season is meant to be just that; festive. Don't add to your stress by worrying about things that are out of your control. Unwind, relax and place more emphasis on catching up with loved ones than whether or not your food and movement was perfect. Every day is a new day, and your body will give you clues as to what it needs.
When the season is over and things feel a bit less hectic, try to gently return to your lifestyle focusing on nutrient dense foods, hydration and plenty of sleep. If you feel you need more support to help get over the silly season, we recommend working with one of the BePure holistic health consultants about your specific needs. Remember this isn’t a solution to weeks of indulgence and the best cure is always the preventative measures you take in the first place.
Recipe: BePure Kombucha Mocktail
- 150ml plain or ginger flavoured kombucha
- 100ml sparkling mineral water or unflavoured soda water
- 1 sprig of mint
- Juice of 1 lime (lemon works well if you don’t have limes)
Optional for garnish
- 1 Tablespoon pomegranate seeds, fresh blueberries or strawberries
- 2 slices of ginger
- Place the kombucha, mineral water, mint and lime in a tall glass with ice. Muddle to mix the flavours.
- Add garnishes of choice and enjoy!