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Top tips for a healthy Christmas


12:00am 25th December 2011

You don't have to over indulge to enjoy Christmas, that's the advice from health bosses at NHS Yorkshire and the Humber.

Traditionally, Christmas is a time to eat, drink and be merry. However, eating and drinking too much and doing little or no exercise over the festive period can lead to weight gain. 

Regional director for NHS North of England, Paul Johnstone, said:

"Christmas, is a time to let your hair down and to treat yourself and there is nothing wrong with that. However, too much fatty or sugary food and alcohol can mean people gain weight that doesn't necessarily come off in the New Year.

"To avoid gaining weight over the Christmas period, why not mix in healthy snacks like fruit and unsalted nuts with the Christmas treats, and why not get out over the Christmas period for a walk in the countryside or park. A little bit of exercise can help to burn off the excess calories." 

Top tips for a trim start to the New Year:

  • Get active - take a walk on Christmas day; in fact why not set yourself a target of a walk on each day of the Christmas break?
  • Don't overdo the festive spirit - alcoholic drinks are full of hidden calories
  • At the buffet, opt for healthier finger foods  - swap crisps for tortilla chips, and pick pretzels over salted peanuts
  • Avoid the temptation to go back for second helpings.
  • Don't skip breakfast - your body will store more fat the next time you eat.
  • At Christmas lunch, limit the roast spuds and fill up on low-fat turkey and vitamin-packed vegetables.
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