Can we celebrate the holidays and still feel healthy? My favorite nutritionist says yes! That’s why I love her. Use this Healthier Drinking Guide to enjoy the festivities and still wake up feeling motivated the next day.
I’ve been hearing a lot of people resigned to being unhealthy for the holidays: “I’ll start over again in January…” Which only sets us up for feeling guilty – and there’s no need for that. In fact this mindset might actually do more harm than simply enjoying that extra cocktail or two!
There’s been fascinating research that shows guilt causes people to fall off the wagon. The harder you are on yourself, the more likely you are to give up. It seems counterintuitive, but by forgiving your setbacks – you’re more likely to stick with your routine. A recent study looked into how guilt plays a part in willpower and it showed that dieters who broke their diet, and were given a message of forgiveness, stayed connected to their vision and continued on with their goals versus people who carried the guilt.
What I mean to say is that if you’re going to celebrate, do it with a happy heart! And don’t let yourself bring one ounce of guilt into that party. Don’t ever feel like you’re giving up! Remind yourself that balance is important, we all indulge and that’s ok.
Enjoy! Enjoy the Holidays, have a drink and be merry. Enjoy your friends, family, food – be present and full of life. You can still be healthy too. This guide will help you. Before you head out for the night, make your Hangover Cure (recipe below). Follow Pooja’s drinking tips, and enjoy a delicious Healthier Ginger Gin (recipe below) or two.
Keep treating your body well! Don’t give up and start over in January!
Enjoy the Healthier Drinking Guide!
When it comes to alcohol, as much as we don’t like being the party pooper, the truth is alcohol has an ageing effect on the body. How many of us wake up after a night out and feel fabulous? Besides the toxins in alcohol we also have to look at the sugar and other additives that often get thrown into the mix.
That being said, it’s the holiday season and there is no point in saying don’t drink at all as we know that’s more then likely not going to happen.
So here’s to making better choices so your body doesn’t have to work super hard to try and process a badly chosen drink.
The best drink options are…
Distilled spirits that have already been filtered to remove a lot of the toxins so your liver and kidneys don’t have to work as hard, this means your body only has to deal with the alcohol and no other toxins. For this reason vodka and gin are the best choice, followed by tequila and whiskey. Here’s where it gets tough- when you start mixing these ‘better choices’ with sugary mixes you are at risk of adding heaps of teaspoons of sugar and additives on top of your night out increasing the load on your liver. Ideally sipping slowly on a dry martini or whiskey sour with fresh lime is the way to go but for those that need a mixer choose soda, fresh lime or fresh herbs before you opt for sugary fizzy drinks. If you can’t resist an old fashioned GNT look for a pure tonic water and go for a GS(soda)T thats half soda and half tonic to lighten the sugar load. It’s a great idea to see what super foods and herbs you can sneak into your drink.
So how about wine and champagne?
Wine and champagne can have a high percentage of toxins and moulds which can leave our bodies to do a lot of additional processing which cause us to feel terrible the next day.
Red wine is often touted as a health drink but because it is completely unfiltered and often has a lot of yeast it is actually not a great choice for feeling good the next day. Incidentally the resveratrol content is so low that you would be better off eating a small square of dark chocolate (sorry to break it to you). On the plus side French champagne tends to have the lowest amount of mould toxins, so choose this over sparking wine and always go for brut otherwise expect a terrible hangover from too much sugar! Look out for the growing range of biodynamic wine that does not contain chemicals or pesticides.
So what should you take off your festive season party list?
The worst choice has got to be beer as it contains gluten and most of the grains that are fermented are already mouldy before fermentation even starts. Cider is a much better choice over beer, provided you don’t have candida as there are less mould toxins found on apples.
Our top tips for beating a hangover this Christmas
- Drink alcohol with less toxins (the more distilled the better)
- Drink a glass of water for every serving of alcohol- this is a basic step but how many of us forget this one.
- Take some Vitamin C before you go out, it lowers liver aldehyde which is the damaging and ageing part of alcohol and Silymarin (milk thistle) which helps protect the liver.
- Take 2-4 charcoal tablets when you get home to soak up extra toxins
The next day…
- Start with oil pulling. Take 1 Tbsp of coconut oil and swish it around your mouth for 10-15 minutes, being careful not to swallow any. Spit it out and rinse your mouth in salt water to remove any leftover coconut oil. This helps remove the toxins that have built up in your mouth while you were sleeping.
- Jump in the shower and body brush to remove any toxins that have built up on your skin.
- Take some Vitamin C, Curcumin (turmeric) and B Vitamins to help your body detoxify. The B vitamins will also help give you extra energy.
- Drink a fresh, green vegetable juice to boost vitamins and minerals
- Try balance blood sugar with good fats and protein -> reach for scrambled eggs and veggies
- For a real boost try some nourishing bone broth it may not be the first thing you think of but it will certainly help you feel a lot better.
Make a Healthier Ginger Gin Drink:
- 1 measure gin
- 250 ml fresh coconut water
- 1/2 cup ice
- Juice of 1 lime
- Thumb size of ginger
Blend the above until smooth. You can top with a little soda water to add some extra fizz.
Make a Hangover Cure:
- 1 cucumber
- Thumb size of ginger
- 1 lemon
- 1 handful spinach
Juice the above