3 Top tips to avoid overeating at Christmas

So that time of year is upon us again. Mince pies, sherry and Christmas puddings can seem like irresistible temptations. However the guilt and self f loathing that often follows in January can somewhat take the edge off the pleasure. I spoke to a friend the other day who resided to the fact that she was going to put on 4 or 5 pounds over Christmas. The thing that gets me about this is how she felt that she had no choice in the matter. She was clearly upset at the prospect of this inevitable weight gain but seemed powerless to do anything about it. If part of Christmas for you is a little bit of indulgence that's fine. But if you feel you have no choice in the matter use these strategies to change that.

1 Plan your indulgence. 

If you are worried that you will go overboard then plan when you are likely to overeat then plan the days you will allow yourself to deviate from healthy eating. Perhaps allow yourself to indulge on Christmas Day and New Year's Eve but not on any of the other days. Tell other people about this commitment that you have made to yourself that you have made so they can support you in your decision. 

2 Remind yourself of what Christmas is really about.

Christmas these days seems to be more about giving ourselves permission to overeat than anything else. We sometimes need reminding that Christmas has far more meaning than that. It's s time for enjoying the company of loved ones and having a well deserved break from the stresses of work. It's a time for giving and sharing. The food and drink is just the background stuff and it's not where the true joy of this season is found.

3 Exercise self control

If you don't really want it don't have it. Whether it's that extra mince pie or that extra gin and tonic, if you don't really want it then exercise some self control. Remind yourself how a few days overeating can equate to months of healthy eating to lose those excess pounds. Take a moment to stop and ask yourself is this really worth it. If the cost is that you will like yourself less for the rest of 2019 then perhaps the answer is no. 

Khody Damestani MSc BSc (Hons) DIHP is a therapeutic coach, author and lecturer specialising in helping people overcome emotional eating. He sees clients at his private practice in Brighton and runs workshops. For more information contact him at info@khody.co.uk


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