If you are anything like us, you cannot wait for holiday time to indulge in festive foods and a tipple or two. With indulgence does come some unhealthy practices, and all that good work throughout the year can be undone with two weeks of holiday fun. To help you stay on track and kick-start your 2020 in a healthy way, JSHealth's Jessica Sepel has given us her top tips on staying healthy and a couple of festive recipes to get you through the holidays.
Here are Jess' tips to stay healthy this festive season
Eat the JSHealth way
It’s all about balance. Enjoy all foods moderately and eat foods that make you feel good. This means including all the main food groups. As a general guide, aim to have a palm-sized portion of protein at mealtimes. Then, a quarter of your plate should be made up of good-quality carbohydrates (such as brown rice, beans, lentils or sweet potato). Half of your plate should have green, leafy vegetables (the darker, the better!). Add good fats to your meal through the dressing (think good-quality olive oil) or some avocado, nuts, seeds, tahini.
Bring healthy options to the table
If you’re heading to a dinner or a party, try preparing a plate of your favourite healthy food. This will encourage your friends to try something new and will ensure you get some nutrients in. I have plenty of recipes on the JSHealth App.
Putting pressure on yourself to eat well 100 per cent of the time often backfires. This leads to overeating and over-indulge in the foods we feel we have been missing out on. So give yourself permission to indulge – just moderately. Enjoy a piece of Christmas cake or a dessert and do so slowly. Savour every bite and make sure that you enjoy the taste and texture of what you’re eating.
Give yourself permission to indulge in a few glasses of alcohol but stop and two to three drinks in one sitting. Steer clear from sweeteners, liqueurs, cocktails and flavoured soda. Instead, opt for vodka and gin with kombucha, soda water and citrus fruits.
One-pan Honey-Mustard Chicken
This honey-mustard chicken is one of my favourite quick and easy dinner creations and it tastes divine.
- 10-12 Brussels sprouts, halved
- 1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 bunch asparagus, ends chopped
- 1 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 organic chicken breasts
For the marinade:
- ¼ cup cold-pressed olive oil
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 tbsp parsley, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180°C or 360°F. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
- Place the Brussels sprouts, cherry tomatoes and asparagus on the baking tray. Drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil and season with sea salt.
- To make the marinade, add all of the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until they’re combined.
- Add two chicken breasts to the centre of the tray and spoon over the marinade.
- Place the tray in oven to bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the chicken breast is cooked and the vegetables are golden.
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted
- ⅔ cup raw cacao powder
- 1 tbsp tahini
- 3 tbsp sweetener of choice (raw honey, maple syrup or rice malt syrup)
- Pinch of sea salt
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ cup pistachios, roughly chopped
- ¼ cup goji berries
- 2-3 tbsp shredded coconut
- Combine the melted coconut oil, raw cacao powder, tahini, sweetener, sea salt and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl and whisk until combined.
- Line a small baking pan with baking paper and pour the mixture into a baking pan. Top the mixture with chopped pistachios, goji berries and shredded coconut.
- Cover with cling wrap and freeze flat for 20-30 minutes or until the chocolate is set.
- Break apart and serve. Store in the fridge or freezer.