With all of the celebrations and seasonal parties on the schedule, it’s all too easy to overdo it during the holidays. The holiday season is a potential minefield for those trying to avoid a digestive upset. Most people throw their diets out the window and resign themselves to seasonal gastrointestinal distress and weight gain. Wouldn’t you like to avoid those pitfalls this holiday season? Here are some tips on how to sidestep tummy trouble and make your gastroenterologist proud.
Slow Down, Walk Around
If you’re mindful of what you’re eating, you’re less likely to overindulge. Eating too quickly can lead to heartburn, indigestion, and bloating. If you notice yourself hovering or parking by the food table, make an effort to get up and socialize. If you’re talking to Aunt Darlene about her beloved Chihuahuas, you won’t be stuffing your face! For gatherings where you all sit down to one big meal, remember that leftovers can taste better than the original. Eating in small batches is much easier on your digestive system.
Stay Away from Known Trigger Foods
This seems obvious, but you should stay away from foods that have caused problems in the past. If you’re lactose intolerant, it’s probably not a good idea to load up on Grandma’s famous mac-and-cheese. Yes, it’s delicious, and yes, the holidays only come once a year, but you’ll regret it. Skip calorie bombs, caffeine, and alcohol since they’re likely to have negative digestive consequences.
Bring Your Own Dish
It can be tempting to avoid your own food at a potluck in favor of other unknown and potentially delightful treats. But it might be smart to stick to your own contribution because you know what ingredients you put in it and can stay away from potential hidden trigger foods.
In moderation. If there are particular holiday treats that you want to indulge in, allow yourself 2 tablespoons. You’re less likely to eat way too much if you only put a little bit on your plate at a time!
Of course, the holidays are going to be stressful, which is why it’s so important to take some time out to de-stress. Try to find a quiet place, focus on your breathing, meditate, take a bubble bath or do whatever works for you! You may feel like you’re being pulled in a million different directions, but you can’t help others if you’re running on empty yourself.
Stick to Your Regular Routine
Whether you’re traveling for the holidays or have family coming in from out of town, the holidays practically demand that we throw our normal schedules out the window. However, by supporting your digestive system then your body will be able to better handle extravagant holiday food choices if everything else about your routine stays the same.
If you’ve noticed changes in your digestive health lately, don’t be afraid to contact Digestive Health Centers! We can help!