• “Go on – have another one; it’s Christmas!”

        How familiar does that sound?

        As we approach the festive party season, I know many people dread being faced with the onslaught of food and drink that some find hard to avoid.

        The local supermarkets and shops are already filled with mountains of tempting treats; the most tempting are of course, high in saturated fat and laden with sugar, positioned conveniently at the check-out queue!

        But why is it that at Christmas we feel the need to buy a huge tin of chocolates ‘just in case anyone pops in’, or gigantic bags of nuts and crisps ‘for that unexpected drinks guest.’ How many times do they get eaten before a guest has even crossed the threshold, so then you go and buy another one (or fall victim to the Buy One, Get One Free’ offer) We are led to believe by the advertisers that we need to have a siege ‘stock up now for Christmas’ mentality – despite the fact that the shops never seem to close so we can always pop out and get something if someone does appear unannounced.

        Added to the struggle are the office temptations – the mince pies at tea break, chocolates given in the Secret Santa gift exchange  – these all add up and add hundreds, if not thousands of calories to our daily consumption well before the big day arrives. Then there are the Christmas parties – buffet’s laden with pastries, crisps, quiches and that’s before the alcohol (that extra half bottle of wine = 250 calories; 1 pint of beer = 150-200 calories – add them up!)

        Then there’s Christmas Day itself when at least a third of us eat over 7,000 calories in one day alone – some many more. In fact, the British Dietetic Association estimated last year that the average Briton gained per person was around half a stone!

        Add to that the lack of sleep from preparations and partying, and the stress of planning the family festivities; it’s easy to see why the comfort food looks tempting.

        Little surprise therefore  that the pounds pile on over just a few weeks and many are left feeling fat, unhealthy and bloated by the end of the holiday, and suffering one big nasty hangover (and that’s just what’s hanging over the trouser belt!)

        With a little careful planning, sensible and restrained shopping and a bit of motivation and confidence, you can avoid this over-consumption and kick start your New Year resolutions early. Think of the money you will save as well – put it towards a new outfit in the January sales to celebrate your achievement!

        Help is at hand! Come along to our Christmas healthy eating workshop on Thursday 29 November in Brighton to pick up some tips and advice on what to avoid, tasty but healthy swaps you can make, and give you the confidence to say ‘no!’ Click here for more information and to book or contact me for more information.