Six Secrets to staying trim over the Festive Season

If you enjoy the social end of year events and Christmas, yet find it hard to resist all that yummy food and drink – then read these tips for not putting on any extra weight.

With the holiday season, a myriad of high-calorie, festive foods and drink choices may be in your future. The biggest challenge is to not over-indulge in all of those yummy flavours, but to still enjoy some delightful treats.

Here are some party strategies to keep you from going overboard.

DRINKS: Keep yourself well hydrated. Drink about 2 litres of pure water a day – say half an hour before food and an hour after (not with meals). Often our hunger pangs are only a signal from a dehydrated body. If you don’t have access to rain or reverse osmosis water, then a mineral-free water you can buy is called ‘Pure Dew’. Keep some with you and drink a full glass of water in between each alcoholic beverage which will make you feel full and hydrated (…reduces hangover symptoms also). Tomato juice is a great appetite suppressant. Offer to be the designated driver so you have an excuse when friends try to encourage you to drink.

PROTEIN: If there is protein available (e.g. chicken, shrimp, egg) eat that first, as it will stabilise your blood sugar and make you feel more satisfied. Consider eating some protein even before you go to a party, so that you are not hungry and tempted by the carbs or seduced by all those incredibly rich, caloric hors d’oeuvres

CARBOHYDRATES:  If there is finger food, restrict your nibbles to the ones that come from nature only (carrot sticks, guacamole, olives) and don’t eat anything made from flour (crackers, bread, pizza, pastry, pasta). If the only natural food is sitting on top of a cracker or bun, I slide it off onto a saucer and eat it with a teaspoon. I open the asparagus rolls and leave the bread behind.

EXERCISE: By doing some exercise before the party, you will also bring your blood sugar up and be less hungry, apart from feeding your body its number one nutrient – oxygen! Walk the stairs instead of the lift. Park a block away so you have to walk there and back.

THE BUFFET: The biggest issue when faced with a buffet is not picking at the food throughout the entire evening. Make a plate, sit down, eat and chew mindfully. Once you’re finished, commit to being done and avoid standing by (and picking at) the food table. Wear tight clothes or a belt which exposes your tummy and gives you feedback.

THE NO-NO’s: Steer well clear of the dipping sauce. (Skipping any kind of sauce will generally save you hundreds of calories.) If you have an issue with hors d’oeuvres, carry a clutch bag in one hand and a drink in the other. It will be inconvenient to eat. If you must drink, have only one or two cocktails. Too much alcohol inhibits your judgment during a meal. Choose something you don’t love so you won’t finish it as quickly. Unfortunately, drinking alcohol can work as an appetite stimulant.

Have a safe and happy festive season,

Esther Kivi

Esther Kivi

Natural Medicine Practitioner, Kinesiologist and Weight Loss Specialist.

Call for a chat +64 9 236 0393 or email

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