There is always a time for occasional indulgences, however over the holidays it is easy for these indulgences to quickly add up through multiple holiday parties and family dinners.
Have you recently been diligently restoring your gut health, or excluding problematic foods from your diet?
Don’t let the holidays derail your hard work! Here are 5 tips on keeping those holiday pants feeling good!
- Digestive enzymes. You can always find this digestive aid tucked into my purse. Taken directly before a meal, digestive enzymes assist your body in breaking down food, preventing inflammation further down the digestive tract. This can be useful for a large meal, or when under stress as your body won’t be producing its own adequate digestive juices. Don’t want to take a supplement? Try finishing your meal with papaya or pineapple for a dessert option as they naturally contain digestive enzymes. Alternatively, you can start your meal with a bitter food, such as a bitter salad, that will help stimulate your body’s own digestive juices.
- Bring your own favorite dessert. If you have been following an elimination diet it can be difficult to stay on track if there isn’t food compliant with your diet at an event. In such a case, bring your own favorite alternative recipe such as these black bean brownies (https://minimalistbaker.com/vegan-gluten-free-black-bean-brownies/https://minimalistbaker.com/vegan-gluten-free-black-bean-brownies/). It is likely that someone else at the dinner will be grateful for your alternative dish too!
- Mindful eating. Mindful eating habits are inevitably at the root of healthy food choices. Take a quick moment of reflection before you fill your plate to start with the greens, proteins, fibers, and health fats. This will fill you up and balance your blood sugars to help prevent cravings throughout the evening.
- Smart drinking. Holiday cheer quite often means an extra beer, or some heavy drinks such as eggnog or specialty coffees. Opt for lower sugar drink choices such as this cranberry lime vodka soda from Angela Liddon author of Oh She Glows. (http://ohsheglows.com/2013/11/29/my-go-to-holiday-cocktail-quick-easy-festive-and-low-in-sugar/). My all time favorite swap for alcohol is kombucha, or an evening digestive tea.
- Get outside! You may not have time to hit the gym or your favorite class, but there is usually a way to find time for some activity. Family time can be enjoyed over a post-dinner neighborhood stroll. We are fortunate to have the mountains as our backyard, so getting out into them for a family activity like snowshoeing is not only good time, but will reduce stress and help get your digestion moving!
Find yourself feeling slow, bloated, achy, fatigued, or irritable? These are all common symptoms of an over taxed liver.
January is just around the corner making it a perfect time to set up an appointment for a New Years reset!
Elizabeth Miller, ND