Five tips to avoid over indulgence during the holidays

how to avoid over indulgence this christmas

Author: Helen Morton

As we celebrate the festive season with friends and family, Helen Morton, a registered nutritional therapist, gives us five tips to avoid over indulgence.

1. Portion control

By all means treat yourself to a mince pie or slice of Christmas cake over the festive season, but do exercise some control and limit your treats. By slowing down and making sure you enjoy and savour every single mouthful of the treat you choose you are more likely not to overindulge. The same applies to meals out; you can enjoy a festive dinner without overloading your plate and stomach. Slow down, listen to your body and try becoming more aware of when you are getting full and whether you really need that indulgent dessert or not.

2. Moderate alcohol consumption

If you decide to drink alcohol over the festive period try and keep it in moderation. One tip is to alternate an alcoholic drink with something non-alcoholic, preferably water. This means you get to enjoy the alcoholic drinks you choose yet minimise the risk of suffering with a hangover the next day. Staying well hydrated helps to keep your head clear and hormones in balance, maximising your energy levels the next day.

3. Colourful vegetables

Load up your plate with an array of colourful vegetables at every meal possible. This can be achieved by adding a side salad to your main meal or choosing an extra spoonful of Brussels sprouts instead of a few more roast potatoes. Not only will you benefit from the extra vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin C which helps support your immune system, and magnesium which supports sleep and reduces anxiety, but the extra vegetables will help fill you up so you are less likely to overindulge on dessert.

4. Start the day well

Whatever you choose to eat for breakfast, be it a green smoothie or a warming bowl of berry porridge; make your first meal of the day as nutritious as possible. You are much more likely to continue eating healthily and avoid snacking during the morning if you start the day well. A protein based breakfast, like scrambled eggs on toast, will keep you feeling fuller for much longer than a sugary breakfast cereal, so try and make good breakfast choices as often as possible. On those days where you are really pushed for time even something as simple as nut butter on a slice of wholegrain toast alongside a cup of green tea will start your day well.

5. Be brave

There is absolutely no reason why you have to give in to peer or family pressure and join in with other people’s food and drink indulgences. Everybody is entitled to make their own choices, and by sticking to the tips above you will be empowering yourself to have a wonderful holiday season, happy and full of energy, ready to start the new year in a positive way.


About the Author
Helen Morton (DipION) is a qualified, registered Nutritional Therapist. She is a member of the British Association for Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy (BANT) and Complimentary and Natural Health Care Council (CNHC). Helen has a special interest in nutrition for mental health, stress management, overall women’s health including menopause, and sports and running performance. You can email Helen at, call her at +44 (0)7984439259, or visit her website:

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