How to enjoy eating over the summer holidays and feel at your best

Stay healthy through the festive season

Summer holidays are a time for unwinding, spending time with loved ones and getting out and about to do the things you haven’t had time to do. Enjoying festive food whilst doing all of this is a highlight too. To feel at your best during this time it can pay to think about and plan a little what you are eating and drinking. How do you feel after over eating (and possibly drinking) for days, possibly slow and sluggish, probably not the way you want to feel for your holiday.

A couple of days of eating whatever you like will not outweigh a year of eating patterns for your health. Eating to nourish your body well is a continuous journey. Here are a few tips to have you feeling at your best whilst enjoying summer.

Purchasing Festive Fare

Overeating, particularly on biscuits and cakes generally starts well before Christmas day. Festive food starts appearing in the shops well before Christmas, so let’s leave it there until close to Christmas. Part of the enjoyment of life is anticipation. Wait to eat your mince pies, shortbread and plum pudding so they feel special and you can really enjoy them. Buy some fresh nuts, cherries and berries for those events before Christmas.

2. Make a choice

When an array of food is on offer, it is easy to think you will miss out if you don’t try some of everything. Have a look and ask yourself what you feel like? Make a choice; which of these foods you would most desire. Eat and really savour the flavour! The bonus is you will feel comfortable after eating and you can choose to go back for more.

3. Plan ahead

What social activities are coming up? When will you enjoy an alcoholic drink or few and when will you reach for the iced water, soda water and lime or maybe a Rokeby Farms protein smoothie? Without a plan, it’s all too easy to end up indulging in more alcohol and food than you wanted to, leaving you feeling lousy. Having a plan helps guide you, you can think about your options and take control.

4. Quality over quantity

We are not talking about going hungry and having to stop at a takeaway outlet on the way home from dinner. Buying quality food, it might be something special you don’t normally buy. A small serve to sit and savour, it is a good way to enjoy food in general.

The opposite to this is buffet style. By the time you get to the end, the plate is piled, flavours are all mixed and it really is a bit of an shambles. You don’t need to have some of everything. Eating slowly and until comfortable not full will have you feeling more energetic compared to that sluggish feeling of a food coma.

5. An extra handful of veggies

We could all eat more vegetables for good health. Nothing better than delicious summer salads with a tasty dressing. Rokeby Farms probiotic yoghurt mixed with some fresh herbs such as mint and oregano can make a beautiful dressing for coleslaw.

Roast vegetables for Christmas dinner are the best. Carrot, capsicums, mushrooms, sweet potato, pumpkin and parsnip with the traditional potatoes using herbs and good quality extra virgin olive oil. A Rokeby farm probiotic yoghurt dressing can be delicious particularly with left over roast vegetables too.

6. Summer snacks

If out and about over summer how about a cooler bag with Rokeby farms protein smoothies? Filling, hydrating and delicious.

Nuts are another great snack and perfect for sitting around having nibbles with friends. Try buying some in their shell to crack open, a novelty now days.

Plan around seasonal produce. Berries, stone fruit and cherries are perfect at this time of year. A simple bowl on the table or cut up platter to share.

Summer holidays can be full of good fun and good food. Give yourself to enjoy a whole range of foods over your summer break.

Simone Austin
Accredited Practising Dietitian

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