At this time of year, it can be challenging, digestion-wise, to navigate through festivities when a plethora of mouth-watering dishes and beverages are constantly at your fingertips! It’s certainly a time of year when it becomes all-too-easy to consume many rich and caloric foods because “that’s what you do during the holidays”! It can be especially challenging if you possess food sensitivities and/or food allergies that make digestion more complicated.
Avoiding the indigestion and discomfort that can ensue when constantly snacking and mixing richer-than-normal foods together, IS possible! It’s also possible to enjoy highly flavourful and satisfying foods that are nutrient-dense, providing our bodies what they need in the process.
Here are 10 helpful guidelines to assist you through this festive season with all the enjoyment and ideally less discomfort!
Consider contributing a homemade dish (or two), when visiting others for festivities; the food you have prepared then becomes something you know you can rely on for consumption, without hesitation
Be cautious with creamy ingredients, as they can be very rich for the body and can easily contribute to discomfort; if preparing a dish that requires a creamy component (i.e. a sauce), considering using raw cashews to attain a very similar effect, with greater nutritional value
Pre-eat before an event (something that includes both protein and vegetables), so as to maintain a steady blood sugar level); this strategy reduces the likelihood of overeating at an event, allowing you to better maintain portion control!
Eat smaller meals throughout the day, instead of saving yourself for that highly-anticipated meal; this is much easier on your digestive system and reduces the likelihood of gas and bloating!
Try to consume water between meals, as opposed to during meals (this goes for any time of year!); fluids dilute your highly-acidic digestive juices, slowing down and inhibiting optimal digestion
As much as possible, opt for whole foods that provide nutrition and energy from complex carbohydrates (i.e. whole grains, fruit and vegetables, clean protein) that keep blood sugar stable, rather than from a poor source of energy (i.e. refined/processed foods) with high caloric content that contribute to increased blood sugar
Ensure you are consuming dietary fiber (i.e. whole grains, fruit, vegetables, legumes) to keep the digestive system regular, during what can become atypical eating habits!
Balance acid-forming foods (sugar, alcohol and animal foods) with alkaline-forming foods (i.e. lemon and dark, leafy greens); starting your day with fresh lemon water is always an excellent choice! You can read my blog post about this here!
Take time to CHEW, set your CUTLERY DOWN between bites and thoroughly enjoy the food, so as to eat less and avoid feeling bloated and uncomfortable! It takes 20 minutes for the gut to signal to the brain that it is full, so less is MORE!
HAVE FUN! This is certainly the season to come together, celebrate and enjoy one another’s company!
Wishing you the most wonderful holiday season this year! Please don't hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have!