Ah! Easter is finally upon us, and I’ll be honest, this is one of my favourite times of year.
Easter eggs are one of my favourite indulgences, and I even remember a few years ago when it was common place to eat 3 a day, especially when Tesco did their buy 1 get 2 free offers.
But since then I’ve luckily got my sweet tooth under control, and I can now enjoy this time of year without going overboard.
That’s why today I thought I’d share 9 top tips to deal with temptation this Easter, so that you can enjoy the time off without doing too much damage to your waistline.
1) Drink plenty of water
It’s easy to confuse feelings of hunger with thirst, and just making sure you are properly hydrated can make a huge difference when it comes to cravings and battles with willpower.
Try having a glass of water around 20 minutes before meals to partially fill your stomach; this will help stop overeating and from reaching for that extra bag of Maltesers your Easter Egg comes with, another Creme Egg, or my favourite – Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs. You’ll have an easier time recognising if you are full if your stomach is physically full itself!
2) Become more mindful
This is a big one, as we can easily be completely unaware of just how much we are indulging, leading to a huge amount of excess calories.
One of my favourite strategies I get clients to implement is saying yes they can give in to temptation, but they have to have a glass of water first and wait 15 minutes.
This will go a long way in helping you stop acting on impulse, and after that time the feelings of desire may have completely passed.
By doing this then you can enjoy it more on times you do choose to give in, and start practicing moderation and self-restraint.
3) Limit your treats
I’m not saying don’t enjoy the eggs or hot cross buns, but try reducing your portion size to half a full serving. Yes, I know half of an Easter chocolate egg shell seems like I’m killing fun, but do you really need all of that after you’ve indulged in a full on roast (and hopefully drank your water ).
That will make a big difference, and help you stop undoing all your hard work in a single day!
4) Up your protein and vegetable intake
Not only is this going to provide your body with essential nutrients, but it will also keep you fuller for longer, and make you less likely to snack on other foods!
If you’re having a big cooked lunch, then limit your helpings of seconds, and only go back for more vegetables.
However, Remember how you’re already eating lamb for your Easter Roast Dinner? That’s a great source of protein, but remember – it’s very high in calories compared to something like chicken or turkey, so just be mindful., so if I were you I’d up it through some peas or quinoa… It’s 2017… Easter meals can be less traditional, after all!
5) Get some exercise
The long weekend is a great time to throw some much needed activity into the mix, and getting out of the house can be a great way to remove yourself from temptation.
Get the whole family involved and go for a walk, swim or bike ride! Or hit up the gym and break a sweat, attend a class or play an outside sport like golf or tennis.
Anything to get you moving is great, and may be exactly what you need to relax and unwind.
The extra calories you burn will help limit the damage from the snacks and treats, but just make sure you don’t use the fact that you exercised as justification for your other actions.
6) Stop and think
Are you snacking or picking on treats because you actually want them? Or just because they are in sight?
Often we turn to food when we are lonely, bored, depressed or facing a variety of emotions, but on the other side of that we can also over use food for celebration when we are happy, such as during family, work or social events.
Once you recognise your trigger points you can start to become aware of your actions, and from there change how you respond.
7) Don’t rush meals
I know someone who can devour an entire Giant Cadbury Easter Egg in less than a minute… ME! But when you do that you still feel hungry. Why?
It can take 20 to 30 minutes for our stomach to send signals to our brain that we are full, which in turn can lead us to eat more when we are actually satisfied.
So slow down how quickly you eat, and implement a rule that when done you will wait at least 30 minutes before going for seconds.
8) Don’t leave food out
If you have a habit of being a grazer then keep snacks out of sight and not just laying around on the table.
It’s far too easy to pick on them every time you walk past, so do yourself a favour and this time only… make life more difficult for yourself: tuck away that golden wrapper in the deepest corner of your cupboard or fridge, or give your lamb leftovers away to a homeless person and do some good.
9) Don’t feel guilty
While we should be doing everything we can to improve our health, at times we also need to enjoy ourselves. Easter is meant to be a time when we all get together with our loved ones. So take some time to enjoy your food for what it is, and make the most of the company rather than devouring what’s in sight.
So if you do indulge, then enjoy it for what it is.
The worst thing you can do is overthink it, causing feelings of guilt or self-doubt, as this is a one-way ticket to a ‘screw it’ approach, leading to an all-out binge.
If however you come out of Easter feeling stuck and in a slump, then to help you get back on trap I’m running a free 7 day ‘no added’ sugar challenge!
During this 7 days I’m going to be helping you every step of the way, providing you with everything from accountability to support and guidance, helping you make more informed choices and break the addiction.
What do you think?
Share your thoughts, questions and any other strategies to help with temptation this Easter below.
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