Cold weather and warm, calorie-laden comfort food tend to go hand in hand. This can potentially lead to the ‘winter bulge’; especially when coupled with a reduction in exercise which often ends up happening as well.
To help you avoid packing on the kilos over the winter months, we’ve got some healthy eating tips for you (and make sure you check out our ‘Indoor activities to get you through the cold months‘ article so you’ve got no excuses not to stay healthy and fit this winter!).
Curb the carb cravings
We have a tendency to crave carbohydrates such as potatoes, pasta and bread when our bodies are feeling cold and tired, which means you may feel like eating more during the wintertime. Try to keep warm throughout the day and get a decent sleep at night (rather than curling up on the couch under a blanket and watching a DVD until 11pm!).
Also be aware that if you’re feeling like a second helping, it may be a winter craving rather than hunger calling you. Dish yourself a regular serving the first time and resist going back for seconds.
Make good meal choices
Do some research and find some healthy staple recipes to get you through the cold days. Make a hearty winter vegetable soup with lentils and chickpeas, or dust off your slow cooker and make a healthy stew full of vegetables.
When it comes to saucy dishes, tomato or vegetable-base is king; limit your intake of creamy and cheesy sauces.
Try to maintain your 5+ a day fruit and veges throughout the winter period as staying on track with that will also help prevent your balanced diet from derailing.
Keep up your water intake
When the weather is hot, we’re more likely to remember to drink water than when it’s cold; but keeping up your water intake is just as important in the winter time!
Carry a water bottle around with you or have it on your work desk so that you can sip water throughout the day. Drink a glass of water before each meal and snack as it can be easy to mistakenly think you’re hungry when you’re actually thirsty and dehydrated.
Warm snack ideas that won’t inflate your calorie intake
So you want a snack that will warm your body up from the inside, but you don’t want to overdo it on the calories by getting hot chips? Here are some warm healthy snack ideas to help you out:
– Trim hot chocolate
– Stewed/baked apple
– A piece of fruit toast or fruit english muffin
– Vegetable or miso soup
– Tea (try peppermint, berry or something different)
Image / FreeDigitalPhotos.net – vorakorn