The holidays are upon us. So you know what that means - family, fun and food.
When there's too many things to choose from, some of us tend to overeat. We've all been there. One of my major problems is keeping it to a minimum - tasting everything but not eating too much at the holiday buffets. When there's so many things its hard not to go wild.
So let's say you overeat. We all do. I've discovered some great tips to help you bounce back and prevent holiday weight gain. It's worked for me; it'll work for you!
The day after a holiday (or weekend, or week) of eating too much:
Work out. This will make you instantly feel better. I've found that if I miss a few days it's incredibly hard to get back into the routine, but once you get back on the wagon it's much easier to stay on it. Sweating flushes out your system and you'll feel great, or at least accomplished, afterwards. Make sure you weight train too. We all know muscle burns more calories than fat, even when you're not active. I NEVER see girls working with the free weights at my gym. I'm one of the only ones. Don't be scared. Ignore the guys and use those weights. They're way more effective than machines.
Drink a TON of water. It will flush you out. During the workweek I drink close to 100 oz. of water a day. I just like water alot. At an average dinner the waitress refills my glass at least 2 times. But during parties and get togethers I'm not focusing on filling my 20 oz. waterbottle 5 times, like I do at work. So I often get dehydrated, especially since I drink so much water most of the week. You've heard it before - you want your pee to be as light as lemonade, not very yellow (unless you recently took a vitamin, in which case it may be highlighter yellow because of abortion.) This is TMI, but mine is usually almost completely clear.
Eat your fruits and veggies. With so much toxins in your body from all that red meat/alcohol/processed stuff/sugars, veggies help restore your body's pH and, again, flush you out. Cucumbers are awesome and I make it a rule to eat it almost every day, but especially on Mondays following a busy weekend. Cucumber are 95% water and are great for moving the toxins through your system. I also like carrots, and lots of leafy greens. It really helps.
Eat something with fiber. One caveat: if you body is not used to fiber (the recommended daily intake is 25 grams a day but most people get under 10) you will be hurting. You have to build up a tolerance for it so start small. Don't grab a huge bow of Fiber One. This, Kashi and whole grain foods have a ton of fiber that will give you alot of gas and, um, bathroom issues of you go from zero to 60. Start with naturally-occuring fiber in fruits. Raspberries and apples have alot and will be easier on your system. The reason you should eat fiber is actually because your body can't digest it. It will bind to toxins and get escorted out of your body. Yes, this means you will "go" more. Sorry. You gotta go to get the bad stuff out!
I'm partial to juice drinks. Sometimes they have a lot of calories - fruit is high in calories - but they're worth it. You could do a juice cleanse; I've tried the BluePrint Clease. It's difficult though (for me at least, because I'm blood type O and crave meat; more on that later) and pretty expensive. You could make your own juices - BPC has a book out that give recipes. Or just go to Whole Foods and buy one of their pre-bottled juices or drinks which range from $2 to $5. I like It Tastes Raaw, Cell-nique, Urban Detox and Skinny Water. Not sure HOW much they help, but they taste good and definitely give you a lot of nutrients.
Take vitamins. Your body has been depleted by all the stuff you ate, so give it its vitamins back. I like a multi and B-complex for energy. Gummy vitamins are awesome, by the way! I also like fish oil for better skin, hair and nails - it has also been proven to ease depression, lower cholesterol and reduce inflammation.
Stay fresh. Avoid processed foods for a few days. Studies have shown that we actually develop craving for processed foods, so if you avoid them you won't have the desire to eat them. Manufacturers specifically PUT addictive "ingredients" (crap) in our foods to make us desire them. ANYTHING you want to eat you can eat organically. Even burgers, cakes and cookies (don't overdo it thought!). It's much better for you, and for the planet. Not better for your wallet? Go to Trader Joes. They have organic food at super reasonable prices. Even Stop and Shop has its Nature's Promise brand, which is natural food at a low cost.
Do Yoga. The moves twist and turn your body, literally wringing out your insides like a sponge. You'll feel better, and your organs will let go of the toxins they've been harboring.
Massage. I know it's expensive. Get your significant other to help you out with this. It's so enjoyable and it also helps move toxins out. If you want an inexpensive professional massage, get one from the nail salon!
Take an Epsom salt bath. This draws the toxins from your skin.
Get more sleep. This is when your body recovers. You'll love it.
If you do these tips, and try to keep them going all week, you CAN eat what you want on weekends and not gain weight. Just keep it balanced.
I'll show you how to avoid a hangover! Work for me!
You went out and, despite your promise not to go too hard, drank way too much. Now you're home, it's 3 a.m. and you're drunk. You know a hangover is coming, but what can you do to avoid it?
DRINK WATER. Number one most important thing. Part of a hangover is from dehydration. I know you don't WANT to drink water before bed but you have to guzzle it. And keep some by your nightstand for when you wake up thirsty.
Take those vitamins. Drinking really depletes your vitamins, especially B. Make sure you take a multi plus B before bed, and when you wake up.
Take ibuprofen (anti-inflammatory). Your body's inflammation goes up when you drink, so take Advil to keep it down. It will help with the future headache!
Eat something carby. This will soak up the remaining alcohol in your stomach.
Stay up later. I have no idea if this has ever been tested, but it works for me. If I'm still bad and very dizzy I know I shouldn't go to bed yet. I'll stay up, eat some food, drink water and watch tv or read before I get in bed. The room has to stop spinning. I'd rather be tired than hungover. When you get in bed I've heard about the "put one foot on the floor" theory. I don't know if this works, never tried it, and my bed is too high to try it anyway. Let me know if it works!
Anticipate how bad it will be. Were you drinking beer? Wine? Hard stuff? Was it brown liquor or clear? Clear is easier on your system, as is wine or beer.. sometimes. It really depends on the brand - how it's made, fermented and distilled. Know yourself. If you drank Jose Cuervo all night make sure you drink more water and eat more bread! Know your limits too, but you already knew that, right?
The next day, eat some junk food. I know it's contrary to what I said above, but the grease will coat your stomach and make you feel better. But make sure its fresh, hot and worth it. And keep it to breakfast only! Starting at lunch, get back on the wagon. They say eggs and hot sauce are a miracle food. I haven't tried this either. I like a slice of pizza, home fries or chicken nuggets.
Vitaminwater Revive. I don't know why, but this is a miracle drink. I always feel better after drinking it. It has the electrolytes and vitamins your body needs the next day. I'm pretty sure it alludes to this on the bottle.
Get MORE sleep. Don't feel good? Not a work day? Go back to bed. Your body needs to repair itself and sleep really helps.
I hope these tips were helpful! I'll be rereading them this holiday season for sure! Have a great holiday everyone!!