Pretox for the Christmas Party Season!
It’s that time of year when your diary is packed full of parties and social gatherings. We all want to celebrate and have fun at Christmas time and so we should!
But lots of rich food, alcohol and late nights can put a lot of strain on your body and mind and can leave you feeling partied out by the time Christmas day arrives.
Our sleep expert, Dave Gibson, has put together a few tips on what to do before and after the party, as well as the best foods to help nourish your body, so you can keep up with the merriment this year.
BEFORE THE PARTY
Stock up on sleep
When you’re already tired, your body will find it harder and harder to deal with alcohol, leaving you with an increasingly low tolerance. This is because your liver is less efficient at dealing with alcohol when it has less time to rest and recover. Increase your tolerance by totting up a healthy amount of sleep each night for about two weeks before the parties start, around seven to eight hours a night.
Give your liver a break
Although many of us loathe having to giving up our caffeine, having it after 3pm on the day of a party puts a strain on your liver, an organ that’s going to need all the help it can get before party-time. Lay off the caffeine to help it be in the best shape for later.
Get your festive glow inside and out, whilst revving up your detox system too, by dry brushing your skin before you wash. Dry brushing is known to stimulate lymph nodes around your body, helping you remove toxins from your body whilst giving your skin a healthy glow.
Real party foods
Eating high protein foods such as salmon, chicken and avocado, with denser foods such as pasta, can help ensure your body absorbs alcohol much more slowly, thereby raising your tolerance. It’s also important to stay hydrated, so aim to drink plenty of water and herbal teas up to and on the day of the party.
AFTER THE PARTY
Curb the cravings
We’ve all experienced the-morning-after-the-party cravings, where all you want is some high-calorie treat food. Being sleep deprived sends a signal to our body that we are in a state of famine, and stimulates the release of a peptide called ghrelin, an appetite stimulant that increases our food cravings. Try to get some extra hours in bed the morning after and eat some protein based foods such as scrambled eggs and smoked salmon which take longer to digest to curb your appetite.
Catching up with your sleep IS important. Too many parties and late nights, if not accounted for, will leave you feeling exhausted. Try to reclaim the hours you lose either the next night or over the next two to three nights. Giving you enough time to catch-up before the next party arrives!
Over indulging will take a toll on your gut, so it’s important to provide extra support to help maintain normal functions. Taking a good quality mixed strain probiotic supplement over the weeks of the party season can help to support regular, healthy bodily functions. Milk Thistle is also considered very good for over indulgence.
- Your liver will be put through its paces this season, so be sure to stock up on some foods that support your liver too. Some of the best foods to stock up on to promote your livers functions over the Christmas period are our very own home-grown vegetables; broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale and brussel sprouts as well as asparagus and artichoke hearts.
- Mid party season will find many of us rolling out of bed with ever decreasing levels of energy and vitality. Boost your mind with important nutrients like vitamin D and Omega-3 fatty acids so that you can have a bit of extra help concentrating on the day ahead, even after a less than restorative night’s sleep. Find them in oily fish such as salmon, trout and mackerel.
- Get the feel good factor from other delicious superfoods. Never underestimate the simple egg yolk, packed with a wide array of important nutrients your body will love. Another great choice is beef liver, which offers a whole host of amino acids, proteins and vitamins that help your body feel great.
- Add some wholesome flavours to your meals to help them taste great and lift your mood too. Garlic and ginger are great immune boosters, and deliciously warming in many meals, whilst cumin, cinnamon and turmeric can also be valuable additions to help brighten your winter mood.