As the year draws to it’s end, the weather starts to cool, football season begins to ramp up, our minds begin to shift from “How am I going to look in this bathing suit?”, to “Please pass the eggnog!”
It starts with the candy craze, tailgating, to turkey and any kind of Thanksgiving accessory on sale. Then comes all those sweet homemade cookies, pies, and other tasty treats. I’m not even going to go into detail of the assorted mixed drinks and cocktail parties.
The combination of all this consumption plus our innate desire to just sit down and relax by the fire from cold weather keeping us indoors makes this a challenging time of year for our bodies.
The good news is, there is hope, you just need to have a game plan.
You can start by identifying foods that will keep you from bloating. Dr. Oz Identifies 6 foods that do just this:
- Rice (fully digested carbohydrates): Some foods, especially certain carbohydrates, are either indigestible or only partially digested in the gut.
- Banana (potassium): Bloating is not always gas-related. High sodium intake could be the culprit.
- Yogurt (probiotics): The basics of beating the bloat with yogurt is to first make sure you’re choosing a yogurt that has active cultures.
- Herbal tea (antispasmodic): Researchers from the University’s Nerve-Gut Research Laboratory found that peppermint activates an “anti-pain” channel in the gut that soothes inflammation.
- Cucumber (natural diuretic): If you’re already bloated, cucumbers can make a great tummy-flattening snack.
- Papaya (papain): A 2009 study showed that raw papaya contains a white, milky substance called papain and when ripe, the fruit is moderately laxative and helps in the movement of the bowels.
Ultimately, bloating can make you feel sluggish and lead to the destruction of all that hard word you put in over those beautiful sunny months.
Now that you know what you should be eating to keep yourself in check, here are 5 things you should try to avoid altogether:
- Fully Loaded Baked Potatoes
is a popular side dish packed with extra calories and fat. Potatoes themselves are high in calories, as they are a starchy carbohydrate. Topping them with butter, sour cream, cheese, bacon, and more can be heart attack inducing.
- Delivery Pizza is a weekend favorite for many families. Not only is this tradition expensive, it could be expanding your waist lines. Adding on extra cheese and fatty meats like pepperoni is a delicious, but unhealthy choice. One slice of pizza could be an entire meal’s worth of calories. Instead of delivery, try to make your own homemade veggie, thin crust Pizza.
- Fried Chicken is one that many people say doesn’t absorb the oils it’s cooked in. It is true that cooking in very hot oil can prevent the chicken meat from getting greasy. Unfortunately the breading on the chicken will be full of fat and calories.
- Beer Nuts, honey nuts, and chip nuts are all unhealthy snacks. These peanuts are coated in breading, spices, and sugar. They are then fried, amping up the calories even more. Nuts are a great snack if they are dry roasted or left raw.
- Mixed Drinks delicious, but may contain many hidden calories. A gin and tonic could contain close to 200 calories per glass. Tonic water is surprisingly high in sugar. Opt for soda water instead. Here are some healthy cocktail ideas that you may consider in exchange for the traditional choices.
Now we can be honest, we all fall to temptation, and it is okay if we do, so long as we follow these key rules.
Two key rules to live by:
- Everything in moderation and
- Working out an hour a day keeps the pounds away
Here are some additional healthy recipes for the holidays.Credits Dr Oz and Catherine Roberts with ActiveBeat