Happy Chinese New Year, everyone! 🙂
As much as you’d love to regain your six-pack, there’s this one little obstacle that makes it that much tougher to stick to the plan: tempting treats.
Everywhere you go, you’re being lured with carrot cakes drenched in oil, deep-fried dumplings, and all these other sweet treats.
And as much as you’d like to say no, you don’t want to risk your loved ones rolling their eyes at you and think you’re a food snob…
So those big dreams of carving that chiseled body is on the backburner, especially since you can easily gain one – ten pounds over this festive season if you’re not careful. 🙁
And weight gain isn’t the only issue. These oily foods may lead to poor digestion, bad skin (hello pimple!), cravings, and other issues.
But don’t fret, here are a few of my tips for a healthy Chinese New Year to get this New Year to a healthy start. And your six-pack just might thank you after reading this article. 😉
#1. Stick to Your Morning Routine
If you use Chinese New Year as an excuse to eat the deep fried rice cakes, you may feel slugglish, bloated and constipated.
And you may be eating more than you would otherwise, because your system is out of whack and you’re not feeling satisfied.
Instead of feeling guilty about “wasting” the whole day on fatty foods, stick to your morning routine.
At least start out with your smoothie (and take a good dump first). 😉
This will give you a great start by flushing your system with fibre and the necessary phytonutrients, keep you hydrated, prepared to go off track only a little when you attend a food-laden gathering.
Remember the importance of sticking to your morning routine? It’s as easy as 15-minutes.
#2. Practice Moderation
When all these tempting foods are in front of you, it is ok to indulge once in a while. So set realistic expectations.
“I’m not going to eat one piece of carrot cake for the entire holidays” is probably unrealistic for most of us.
However, “I’m not going to eat over 8 (lucky number!) pieces of treats this dinner” is entirely doable.
You may also want to pace yourself and evaluate when you will be indulging.
For instance, if you know that you’ll be visiting Auntie Chan, and she has got some really good to-die-for dumplings (even though it’s drenched in oil), prepare for that.
Brace yourself: Know that you be indulging in those dumplings, enjoy the treats guilt-free, which leads us to the third point.
#3. Strategize Your Success: Eat Before a Gathering
Make sure you eat (*healthy*) before you attend social gatherings.
You do *not* want to attend social gatherings, where you know will be full of junk food, hungry. This is a big no-no.
And, don’t forget your tangerines.
While it is harder to “escape” dinners, try your best to start with a salad/or any vegetable dish first. Fill up on veggies first.
#4. Enjoy Your Mint Tea
Enjoy a nice cup of peppermint tea a few hours after your meal to improve digestion
#5. Take Digestive Enzymes
Digestive enzymes can aid digestion. Chances are you’ll be eating some “unhealthy foods” and won’t be digesting the food properly over this festive season, which can lead to lack of energy, bloating, and indigestion, amongst other symptoms.
Since you’re unlikely to be eating much raw foods (other than your smothie), I think most of you can benefit from enzyme supplements.
My favorite is Rainbow Light Enzyme.
#6: Skip the Unhealthy Appetisers
Instead of munching on unhealthy appetisers and sweet treats, focus on spending quality time with your loved ones.
#7: Limit Oil
Yes, limit your oil intake.
Tip: So if you do want your carrot cake, try to fry them without oil.
You may find that the taste isn’t that much different oil-free.
Most oil you see on the shelf are deficient in nutrients – they have minimal vitamin and mineral content due to the discarding of the fibre and protein during extraction, which contains a significant portion of the anti-oxidants and protein-bound fibers.
Oils like olive oil are marketed as healthy foods because their high content of monounsaturated fat makes it less harmful than saturated or trans fat. While olive oil is healthier than margarine, it is still high in fat, which should be limited.
Even coconut oil may not be as helpful to our cholesterol as marketing claims.
And as you all know, vegetable oils like canola, margarine and palm oil are not exactly the best for you.
#8: Get a workout in and REST
Yes, move! Get a workout in this holiday, and rest very well.
If you are sleep-deprived, your metabolism may not function properly, and your hormones may become imbalanced, leading to potential weight gain.