Does the festive season leave you feeling stuffed, sluggish, unwell and generally bad about yourself? There is so much rich, delicious food around that you are pretty much expected to eat at this time of year, making it can be very difficult to stick to eating sensibly and in reasonable quantities. We saved the best ’til last and this blog includes several strategies to help avoid this outcome and increase your overall enjoyment of this ‘most wonderful time of year’!
If you missed any of our other Silly Season Survival Tips they covered Sleep, Food, Hangovers, Sugar and Gift Giving. You can catch them on the Facebook page, YouTube channel or the Blog!
Not so happy Christmas
The problem with overeating is that it can make you feel bad on all energetic levels! You feel physically uncomfortable at best, and unwell at worst. Whilst at the same time feeling emotionally down because you have not stuck to your resolve to not overeat and you are also very likely to not feel like doing all those other fun Festive things like the family game of backyard cricket or walk along the beach. Of course if you make overeating a habit then it will also result in weight gain and all the other life-threatening side effects of this!
What happens when you overeat?
Whenever you eat, chemical messengers set off to and from the brain. When your stomach begins to stretch, messages go to your brain’s appetite centre to reduce your sense of hunger and make you feel full. At the same time messages are sent to your cardiovascular system telling it to increase the flow of blood to your digestive system so that food breakdown can begin. This increases your heart rate and metabolism. When you overeat the continual increased heart and metabolic rate can actually make you feel hot and dizzy. Physical pain can be experienced as the stomach produces gases resulting from digestion. You might also experience painful acid reflux, which can be triggered by consumption of a high volume of food in one sitting. It takes a great deal of energy to process a high volume of food, especially those that are rich and high in fat. This is why you really want to join Uncle Reg for an afternoon snore fest after that big Christmas dinner!
Tips to Avoid and Manage Overeating
Don’t do it!
No surprise that the first piece of advice is don’t overeat in the first place – when your stomach is sending those messages back to your brain saying that you’re full you need to listen. It’s almost certain that your host will be very happy for you to take some of the endless Christmas leftovers with you, so you won’t miss out on trying that delicious roasted vegie salad afterall!
Don’t beat yourself up!
You are human and as I have said throughout these Tips, the Silly Season is meant to be enjoyed. If you lose your self control for one day of the year, or even a few days during the festivities, it is not the end of the world, right?! Overeating will make you feel uncomfortable in the acute sense but it is only dangerous to your wellbeing when you make it a chronic habit.
Don’t contribute to the problem
Be the person who brings or serves the healthy options – veggie sticks and dips, salads, desserts made with fruit and natural sweeteners and whole meal flour…The options are endless. The less rich the food you are celebrating with, the less energy it takes to digest it and the better you will feel overall!
Especially if you do tend to become a bit of scrooge towards yourself when you overindulge, why not do a fast the next day? Even if you make sure that you give your digestive system a rest for at least 12 hours before you eat again, this will be really beneficial for improving your overall feeling of wellness. If you can go longer even better!
Especially if you have consumed a lot of high fat foods it is great to stimulate the function of your liver to improve the digestive process and lemon water is the simple go-to! Just squeeze half a lemon into your hot or cold water and drink it down – it’s delicious and refreshing as well in our hot Aussie festive season!
DigestZen is a DoTerra blend that provides amazing support to the digestive system for absolutely any digestive complaint. You might want to try diffusing it immediately after your celebratory meal. It can also be applied topically to the abdomen, and does come in a handy diluted roll-on for this purpose. This blend is also great to take internally – one drop in half a glass of water every 4-6 hours – start taking it before you eat to provide preventative support as well as after the event. Other single oils that are great for digestion are: Fennel, Peppermint, Spearmint, Ginger and Orange.
For more information about anything covered in this Blog, or anything else to do with your wellbeing, please contact me.
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