Gorging on mince pies and drinking gallons of mulled wine throughout December doesn’t normally lend itself to looking or feeling great.

Avoid gaining the extra pounds this winter with these steps to beating the bulge this Christmas.

If you’ve had more mince pies than Santa Claus himself, you’ll also understand why he wears elasticated trousers.

‘Avoid fizzy drinks to stop bloating – they add more bubbles to an already windy system,” explains Healthy Food Guide dietitian Jennifer Low.

“Avoid stuffing yourself full too,” as Jennifer advises.

It’s also imperative to chew food properly too, “Otherwise the digestive system has to work harder, producing gas as a side effect,” she says

With all the heavy, rich foods being eaten, many of us will also feel the burn of indigestion.

“Indigestion can present as stomach pain, heartburn, nausea, bloating and/or wind,” Jennifer says.

“The above are all common triggers, but so is eating a large amount of food, especially late at night.”

If you’re prone to indigestion problems avoid spicy foods, fatty foods and caffeine to get your gut feeling better and not hold up your Christmas dinner.

“And keep meals simple, avoid greasy snacks and watch portion sizes to help prevent it.”

Champagne, mulled wine, hot toddies, hot chocolate, we’re all prone to overindulging on a drink or two over the festive period.

“Prevention is better than cure,” Jennifer says. “Stick to safe government guidelines: a weekly maximum of 14 units, with at least two alcohol-free days a week. Don’t drink on an empty stomach, and alternate alcoholic with non-alcoholic drinks to keep hydrated,” she adds.

We’re all guilty of having one too many mulled wines at the Christmas market too so if you are feeling a bit delicate the following day know how to get your body back on track.

Forget having a greasy fry up too, instead stay hydrated with juicy fruits, eat bananas to top up your blood sugar levels and eat eggs to beat the symptoms of a hangover.

“And remember, drinks contain calories, too!”

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