The Christmas season is a time of joy and indulgence, but for veterans, it’s also a crucial period to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The abundance of high-calorie feasts, sedentary activities, and increased alcohol consumption can present challenges. However, with the right strategies, it’s possible to enjoy the festivities without compromising on health and fitness.
Learn More About Veteran Dietetic Services and Our ‘Operation: Healthy Christmas’ Guide.
The guide will be sent as a PDF via email
Strategic Nutrition: Eating Smart
One of the key aspects of maintaining health during Christmas is strategic nutrition. Portion control and mindful eating are essential. Opting for smaller portions of nutrient-rich foods like lean meats, vegetables, and whole grains can make a significant difference. Balance is critical – it’s about enjoying your favourite Christmas foods in moderation.
Hydration: The Secret Weapon
Staying hydrated is crucial, especially in the scorching Australian heat. Start your day with a glass of water and keep a bottle with you at all times. Infusing water with lemon, lime, cucumber, or a splash of fruit juice can make hydration more enjoyable and healthy.
Social Gatherings: Plan and Set Boundaries
Planning ahead for social gatherings can help in maintaining your health goals. Eating a healthy snack before attending parties and focusing on socialising rather than eating can be beneficial. Setting achievable goals for diet, exercise, and social interactions is also important.
Healthy Recipes: The Christmas Feast
The guide offers recipes for healthier versions of traditional Christmas dishes. A nutritious salad with a homemade light vinaigrette and for Christmas Day try our healthier version of the Aussie classic the Pavlova. For the main course, a healthier Christmas Roast with lean meats and a variety of vegetables is recommended.
Staying Active: Enjoyable Exercise
Physical activity is not only a great stress reliever but also a way to counteract the effects of overeating. Incorporating activities like family walks, yoga, and even festive family fitness challenges can be both fun and beneficial. Swimming, beach activities, and home workouts are other excellent ways to stay active during the holidays.
Psychological Well-being: Self-Care and Gratitude
Mental health is just as important as physical health during the festive season. Practising self-care, reflecting on the past year, and expressing gratitude can significantly boost mood and overall well-being.
The holiday season is a time for enjoyment, but it’s also an opportunity to maintain and even improve your health. With strategic nutrition, proper hydration, planned social interactions, enjoyable physical activities, and a focus on psychological well-being, veterans can navigate the Christmas period with health and joy. Remember, it’s about enjoying the festivities wisely without derailing your hard-earned progress.