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Christmas Party Survival Guide

We at Water at Work and Shaw Nutrition thought you might like a few tips on

how to survive the party season with a Christmas Party Survival Guide ,

so here goes.


Run up to the party

Drink plenty of water throughout the day so that you are well hydrated. This will really help to reduce the hangover the next day, as well as preventing you from downing the first glass of champagne you get your hands on!

Make sure you eat well on the day of the party and plan your meals ahead:

1) If there is going to be food at the party then eat your standard breakfast and then a slightly lighter lunch than normal so that you are reducing your calorie intake to compensate for the likely increase in the evening.

2) If there isn’t food at the party then have a normal breakfast with a larger than normal lunch and a light dinner. This will mean that that you don’t feel too full or bloated for the party, but you have still eaten enough to ensure that the alcohol doesn’t go to your head (and legs!) too quickly.

3) Whether there is going to be food at the party or not, include a healthy snack in both the morning and afternoon. This will help to ensure that you don’t turn up to the party absolutely starving and hence over-eating. Aim for high fibre foods which keep you feeling fuller for longer, such as fruits and vegetables or nuts.

At the party

If it is the type of party where you take food along then take something healthy that you like, so that you know there is something you can eat that isn’t too naughty!

Alternate each alcoholic drink with a glass of water.

Why not drive to the party? That way you can’t get carried away with alcoholic drinks which are not only full of empty calories but also encourage you to eat more of the less healthy foods (not only on the night but the morning after too!).

Avoid eating too many beige foods! All too often, every single food at the party buffet is a beige colour – and generally speaking beige coloured foods are the most unhealthy! Look for the healthier options – amongst all those beige foods there is likely to be vegetable sticks or fruit platters so look out for the rainbow colours.

If it is a buffet type food spread then only go up once and avoid seconds. It is really easy to overdo it by going up time and time again and hence losing track of how much you have actually eaten. Also, don’t stand talking to someone right next to the buffet table where you are likely to pick away at foods without even realising.

Get your groove on! Owning the dance floor at the Christmas party will not only increase your popularity (or the opposite depending on how good you are!) but it will also burn lots of calories and keep you away from the food and the bar!

Stick to alcoholic drinks which are lower in calories, for example white spirits with diet or ‘slimline’ mixers, as opposed to wine, champagne, cocktails and beer/lager/cider which all contain a large amount of ‘empty calories’. If you can’t resist wine, why not try topping it up with ice and soda water or diet lemonade so that you drink less?

Avoid grabbing a kebab on the way home – this will shoot up your calorie and fat intake for the day and make for a very unhealthy end to the night. Instead, when you get home simply drink plenty of water – you are most likely just thirsty anyway!

How to deal with the hangover

If you’ve followed all of the information above then you shouldn’t be suffering from too bad a hangover. Then again, it is Christmas and you’ve got to have fun – so you probably will have a pounding head!

It is important that you drink lots of water as alcohol really dehydrates us and so you need to get your body back to a well hydrated state as soon as possible. At the end of the day – a hangover is basically caused by dehydration!

Avoid caffeinated drinks! Lots of people reach straight for a coffee in the hope that it will sort out their non-existent energy, but these only benefit you in the short term. Longer term, they will make you even more dehydrated which will just make your hangover last longer!

Give your body good food! It’s very tempting to head straight for the McDonalds drive through, but this will only make things worse. What your body is craving is re-hydration and to have all of its nutrients replaced, which you can only do by drinking plenty of water and eating nutrient dense foods such as brown toast, good quality meat, nut butters, yoghurt/milk and fruits and vegetables.

Have a healthy energy drink. Red bull might make you feel more perky but give it an hour and you will feel even worse than you did before. Instead, opt for a healthy energy drink with no added sugar and natural ingredients that are good for helping the body to produce and release energy. Also choose one that contains lots of water soluble vitamins as due to your dehydration your body will be pretty short of these. (You can also try having this type of drink before you go to bed, as Vitamin C in particular helps to speed up your metabolism so you will break down the alcohol quicker).

But most of all have a GREAT time.