Tips and Tricks for a happy, healthy gut this Christmas!

The party season is back in full swing, not surprising after last year’s Christmas lockdown people are eager to meet up with friends and family to celebrate in style this year!

 

Let’s be honest we are all going to indulge and let our hair down at some point over the next month so how do we best prepare our gut so we can bounce back after over-indulging. 

 

Food Swaps and Planning! 

Did you know on Christmas day we can consume as much as 6000 calories! With office parties and social engagements that start around the end of November, it can soon result in a stressed-out digestive system!

No one wants to be turning down invitations, so a little planning goes a long way, if you know you are going to be having a heavy meal one day, plan to eat lighter, nutritious food the next. If you have a big meal at lunchtime plan to have soup or a sandwich later.

Food swaps

If you are eating out take a look at the menu beforehand, choose what you are going to have, you’re much more likely to make a healthier choice when you are not influenced by other people!

Swap chips for rice or salad, eat a single course, drink at least one glass of water for every glass of wine and don’t automatically dive into the breadbasket! If you’re dining at someone’s house, stay away from the pre-meal nibbles of high-fat nuts and crisps and stick to one helping of each course.

If you are in charge of the cooking at home why not make your favourite treats a little healthier, check out these 12 healthy Christmas food swaps from the British Heart Foundation.

With a little planning and being mindful of what we do eat you can keep your digestive system happy 😊

 

Exercise 

 

It can be hard to get enough exercise at this time of year when the days are short and the weather’s cold. Try getting up half an hour earlier to fit in a walk, or get out during your lunch hour.

 

Exercise is great for your digestion and gets everything moving, don’t slouch on the sofa after a large meal, take a gentle walk to work it off!

 

Some yoga poses like the boat pose, child’s pose, standing forward bend, downward and upward dog, triangle pose and bow pose are great for improving digestion. They help stretch and relax the abdominal muscles and avoid problems like bloating and acidity. Daily practise as little as 15 minutes a day can be great for your gut and lowing your stress levels.

 

Don’t wait until you feel bloated and unwell if you get into good habits early in the season you will feel much brighter in January!

 

 

Supplements – helper Elves for your digestive system! 

Even Santa has a team of helpful Elves to see him through the busy Christmas season, think of supplements as little helpers for your digestive system!

helper elves

Vitamin D – Low levels of Vitamin D can cause lots of problems in the body, known as the sunshine vitamin, we can become chronically low over the winter, the government recommends everyone should supplement with Vitamin D. Low levels have been associated with:

  • Heart disease and high blood pressure.
  • Diabetes.
  • Infections and immune system disorders.
  • Falls in older people.
  • Some types of cancer, such as colon, prostate and breast cancers.
  • Multiple sclerosis.

 

Dr Campbell has released a great video on the effects of Vitamin D on the body and disease process well worth a watch – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5g9AVqRsjo&t=1s

 

Probiotics – Research has linked probiotics to better digestion, improved immunity, better nutrient absorption, clearer skin, lower stress levels, and much more.

Take a good multi-strain acid-resistant probiotic capsule every day after food. There are many good bacteria, which can help in the reduction of bloating, gas and of course abdominal pain.

Digestive Enzymes – play a key role in breaking down the food you eat, your saliva as well as some of your organs like the gall bladder, liver and pancreas all produce digestive enzymes. If your body doesn’t make enough digestive enzymes it can lead to stomachaches, diarrhoea, gas, or other painful symptoms.

Taking a couple of digestive enzymes before large meals can give your digestive system a helping hand!

Milk Thistle – Milk thistle (silymarin) is a flowering herb related to the daisy and ragweed family. It is native to Mediterranean countries. Great for liver support, removing toxins and rebuilding cells!

Order your favourite supplements and brands through Natural Dispensary including Pro-biotics and Just for Tummies. Orders over £25.00 are delivered free of charge.

 

 

Hangover cures!

 

Even the best-laid plans can go out the window once the Prosecco is flowing so what can you do if you find yourself a bit worse for wear the morning after the night before!

 

The Healthy Approach 

 

Vitamin C helps your body metabolise alcohol more quickly, and the sugar in fruit boosts flagging energy levels and can help your body get rid of toxins, so a fresh fruit smoothie may help. Don’t go for anything too acidic, though, as this may upset an already-delicate stomach. Try blending two carrots, one eating apple, one banana and a bit of fresh ginger for a quick pick-me-up. If you can’t face the noise of the blender, drink some packaged fruit juice or even take a couple of vitamin C tablets.

feeling il

 

The Classic Approach

 

Here’s everyone’s favourite hangover cure – a big fried breakfast. If you’re feeling really queasy, this might not be the best thing to load your digestive system up with. If you can face it, though, a fry up may help, as fat can protect your stomach against the irritating effects of alcohol. The protein in eggs and bacon will also give you some much-needed energy.

 

The Desperate Approach

 

If you’ve had a particularly good night, you might not be feeling like doing much the next morning. Target that thumping headache by taking one ibuprofen tablet, one paracetamol tablet and drinking a cup of coffee, as caffeine has been shown to make painkillers work more efficiently. Then get yourself out for that walk! The exercise will clear your head and kick start your metabolism.

 

Of course, the only way to avoid a hangover is not to get one in the first place (I know, helpful!)

Don’t drink too much, alternate alcoholic drinks with glasses of non-fizzy water, have something to eat with your drink and don’t drink too late into the evening. Drinking a pint of water before going to bed will help too, as will avoiding dark-coloured drinks such as beer and red wine as they contain more congeners (chemicals that contribute to hangovers).

 

Other quick tips

  • Remember to make life easier for your colon by chewing each mouthful of food at least 20 times
  • Don’t eat too late at night, as this is when your digestive system is starting to slow down ready for bedtime, meaning that food you eat will take longer to digest and ferment.
  • If you need to go to the loo for a number two, do it! Holding on until you’re not as busy isn’t good for you – if you wait too long, your bowel will stop sending out signals even though it’s still full. In the end it will start to dehydrate, and you may have difficulty in passing anything at all.

With a little thought hopefully you can navigate the festive season in style, and of course don’t forget a colonic hydrotherapy treatment can help rehydrate you and wash out any toxins, leaving you feeling healthier and more energetic. Plus, you get to lie down and relax for a while!

Complete Health Clinic will be closing for Christmas on the 21st December and reopening on the 4th January, demand is high so please book in advance to secure your appointment!

 

For more information or just a chat, please do give me a call on 0161 2074034 or 079000 82080 or email me at helen@completehealthclinic.co.uk

merry Christmas message