12 Rules Of Christmas To Avoid A Santa Belly!

Senior couple decorating a Christmas tree.

The festive season is almost here and many of us will relate to that dreaded feeling every January when we feel more stuffed than the Christmas turkey!

This year let’s tackle the festive season another way by following these principles to ensure we don’t end up bursting at the seams.

1 Have one, not a dozen. The tubs of brightly-wrapped chocolates are easy to dip into but with each one containing approx. 50 calories it’s not a good idea for the waistline.  An extra 500 calories per day over one week means a 1lb gain on the scales.

2 Alternate alcoholic drinks with glasses of water. It cuts the calories and dilutes the hangover.

Close-up of the hands of the girls making a toast.

Pic: iStockphoto

3 Aim to eat healthily on the days in between Christmas and New Year. It doesn’t have to be a ten-day food fest.

4 Go easy on the food shopping. We often over-stock on calorie laden treats and this leads us to easily overeat.

5 Don’t buy the chocolates, crisps and biscuits too early in the season. So many people break into the boxes early in December because they are there.

6 Avoid anything ‘beige’ when eating from buffet tables. Opt for colourful veggies with hummus, lean proteins and fruit kebabs rather than sausage rolls, scotch eggs and vol au vents.

7 Opt for a lean breakfast. Try scrambled eggs with salmon. Do you really need to eat fat laden croissants on Christmas morning?

8 Limit the extras. Christmas lunch can be reasonably healthy if you pile your plate high with turkey and vegetables and limit the more fattening options. Yes, that means the roast potatoes, pigs in blankets and stuffing!

Traditional British Christmas dinner with sauce being poured

Pic: iStockphoto

9 Have a little of what you fancy. Discard the pastry lids on mince pies, have a spoonful of trifle or a sliver of cake rather than huge portions. You get the taste whilst limiting the calories.

10 Keep moving. Get out for long walks or a morning run over the festive season to burn off some of the extra food.

11 Donate food to a food bank. If you get gifts of chocolate or biscuits or have food left over, donating it keeps the inches from your hips and benefits those in need.

12 Think 80/20. If you keep 80% of your eating in line with a healthy diet and enjoy treats 20% of the time you will start 2019 the right way.

For more tips and tricks for becoming the best you, check out life coach Angela Cox’s new book Enough, priced £10.99

Angela Cox

Angela Cox


Moira Chisholm

I'm the Health Editor on My Weekly and am always interested to hear what's new in this fascinating field. I also deal with the gardening, shopping pages, general features, our website content and the Ask Helen problem page. I have a special interest in Christmas content because I'm on the team for Your Best Ever Christmas Magazine, too!