You don't have to pile on the pounds at Christmas. Use the break in routine to get off the sofa and get active and act like the three kings and make some wise food decisions.
Raise a glass of bubbly
Food scientists at the University of Reading report that bubbly can reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Despite its light colour, champagne includes red grapes rich in polyphenols, plant chemicals that dilate blood vessels and improve circulation. For more information on the treatment, cure and prevention of heart disease visit Heart Research.
Get your skates on
Gliding around an open-air rink, arm in arm with a lover or best friend, is possibly the most romantic thing you can do in winter, you’ll also get a cardio workout, exercise your core, and wake up a lot of the muscles we often neglect with a spot of skating. Here you can find a round-up of the best outdoor skate rinks in the UK.
Too much sugary goodness can cause havoc. Swap the mince pieces for some homemade cookies and use sugar substitutes to reduce the use of sugar and use some flavorings such as cinnamon, nutmeg or vanilla to increase the flavor of the cookies. Fresh fruits are good choice for desserts and the intervals between meals are proper time to have fruits. Visit Diabetes research & wellness foundation for more information.
Tuck into turkey
Don’t save yourself for the big day. One of the leanest meats, turkey is full of vitamins and minerals such as zinc and potassium, which keep the blood cholesterol levels down and is believed to guard against cancer and heart disease. Some processed meats such as sausage, ham or hot dogs should be avoided. It is better to have white meat and avoid dark meat and fresh water fish is a good choice. For more information on how to improve your kidney health visit The British Kidney Patient Association.
Smile and feel happy
Researchers have found that giggling for a few minutes a day burns enough calories to burn 5lbs of fat a year and can improve your overall health! The donkeys at The Donkey Sanctuary can help with that. Throughout December there will be a host of special Christmas events at The Donkey Sanctuary’s donkey assisted therapy centres around the country. These are some of the Sanctuarys biggest fundraising events of the year, as well as a whole load of fun.
Go for a walk
Watch your weight come down as the sun comes up. Sunshine is a great source of vitamin D, which researchers believe can also help keep you trim. A Minnesota study has linked low levels of the vitamin pre-diet to sluggish weight loss in slimmers. Raising your pulse can reduce your risk of a number of different illnesses. Just 30 minutes of daily physical activity can reduce your risk of breast cancer. Working with experts across the world to review all the scientific evidence, Breast Cancer Now estimates women can reduce their risk of developing breast cancer by at least 20% by being regularly physically active. Visit Breast Cancer Now for more information.
Eat purple veg
Purple veg is great for keeping healthy and losing weight, it can also reign at the Christmas dinner table as British supermarkets are now selling purple sprouts, purple asparagus and Purple Majesty potatoes. The colouring comes from anthocyanins, plant pigments said to have antioxidant properties. For more information on medial research information visit The Medical Research Foundation.