Watching your weight

How to get slim (or not get fatter) over Christmas…

Everyone wants to have a good time over Christmas – but, with the average person eating around 3,500 calories on Christmas day, how can we cope with all the extra food and drink? Is it possible to enjoy the festive season without piling on the pounds? Watching your weight

Here consultants at – a website that offers advice and even personalised calorie-counted meals delivered to your doorstep – give their top tips for keeping trim for New Year…

• Plenty of traditional Christmas Day foods are very healthy and low in calories, so fill up on turkey meat (no skin), sprouts, carrots, smoked salmon and fruit with a few nuts.

• Don’t overindulge in the roast potatoes, Christmas pudding and mince pies – fill up on the good stuff, just a little taster of these should suffice.

• Don’t be tempted to skip meals – start the day with breakfast. Six small meals and snacks throughout the day will keep dieters satisfied and fuel their metabolism. If people skip them, they’ll make themselves hungry and be tempted to eat more of the wrong foods.

• Ask people not to buy foodie presents – ask for other things that can help people feel indulged without consuming excess calories.

• No-one expects dieters to have an alcohol free Christmas, but don’t forget that alcoholic drinks can be quite calorific. Alcohol can also lower one’s resolve, leaving people more likely to say “pass the nuts and chocolate” – so just go steady! A good choice is a spritzer made with half wine and half soda water.

• Don’t leave calorie rich Christmas leftovers sitting around. Turn them into a new meal or give them away.

• Don’t forget to stay active. Taking the family for a walk is a great way to be active and spend great time with the loved ones. As well as toning and keeping the metabolic rate going, exercise can help to fight the extra stresses that this time of year brings.

• Don’t worry if one day doesn’t go according to the diet plan. Shake it off, think about why it happened, and then get right back on track.

• Everybody needs some ‘me’ time – but instead of treating yourself with food, try a manicure, a long hot bath or a long chat with an old friend.

Meanwhile, here is your Christmas Day calories counter per portion …

Roast parsnips: 231
Stuffing: 101
Christmas cake: 249
Christmas Pud: 330
Sprouts: 32
Chipolatas in bacon: 197
Bread sauce: 42
Turkey: 149
Carrots: 14
Roast potatoes: 127
Mince pies: 368
Trifle: 235

Drinks: Lager (180), cider (200), dry white wine (175). The average person consumes around five drinks on Christmas Day totalling 850 calories.

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Alison Smith-Squire

Alison Smith-Squire is a writer, journalist and media agent selling exclusive real life stories to newspapers, magazines and TV. She owns the sell my story website, which was set up to help ordinary people sell their stories to the press.

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