Chinese new year is a joyous and festive period. Aside from visiting your loved ones, eating plenty of the festive goodies might be your second agenda. From savouring the traditional bah-kwah, sugary pineapple tarts, high-calorie cookies and other festive delicacies. It is easy to let loose and overindulge in these treats. But how can you celebrate Chinese New Year and maintain your health? Don’t worry we’ve got you covered! Just follow these tips to stay healthy during chinese new year!
Healthy Reunion Dinner
Chinese New Year traditions begin with a reunion dinner. It is the perfect time to begin ushering in this festive season in a healthier manner. It is tempting to dine at a fancy restaurant or buffet. But how about preparing a homemade steamboat with your family? Not only is it healthier and beneficial but you also get to select what goes into the dish!
Here are some tips to get you started on a healthy steamboat dinner:
- Get a variety of colourful vegetables. It can add appeal and colour to the steamboat, it gives additional nutritional value.
- Instead of serving white rice try brown rice. It is rich in nutrients and can boost digestive and heart health.
- Get more fish or lean meat over those unhealthy fatty meats.
- Try to cut down on sauces, but if you must have them, chose those with a “Healthier Choice” labels.
- Preparing the soup can be easier with ready-made stocks. But since Chinese New Year only happens once annually, why not prepare it from scratch? This way you can control the salt intake, and your family can enjoy the benefits of a healthy steamboat
Don’t “Make Space” For Your Stomach
Before the festivities and visiting starts, you might try to free-up our stomachs for the oncoming Chinese New Year goodies, waiting at your relative’s house. However, by doing this may lead you to overeat.
Don’t fall into this trap! A method you can try is to have a light healthy snack before leaving home. A simple serving of fruit or salad. This way you can ease your hunger and also increase dietary fibre to help with digesting the festive snacks.
Now begins the tougher part of staying healthy during chinese new year. Where you will be visiting your relatives and come face-to-face with a mountain of festive goodies. This doesn’t mean you have to put a ban on all the snacks and not even look at them. You can try to set a limit on how much to eat. For example, limiting yourself to just one or two pieces of the festive goodies. Additionally, keep yourself distracted by socializing with your family. If your mouth is busy talking, it can help with doing less munching! As you’ll be distracted from the snack table.
Another method is to use a smaller plate. This does not only apply to your Chinese New Year snacks, but also the dinner that is going to happen after your visits. Using a smaller plate can trick your mind into thinking that the smaller portions are enough to satisfy yourself. While using a larger plate will trick your mind into thinking the food portion is smaller than it actually is. Thus, making you eat more.
So, what happens after you’ve chosen your favourite festive snack? This simple method of chewing slowly can help to prevent overeating. As you take longer to finish what is on your plate, you won’t end up eating too much. A study has suggested that by chewing slower, it can actually help you feel fuller and more satisfied.
Although it is a festive occasion this doesn’t mean its an excuse to stop being active! Healthy eating during Chinese new year is important, but keeping active can also benefit your health in general.
You don’t have to start planning a workout routine from the start. There are simple activities to do to stay healthy during Chinese New Year celebrations. For example, parking your car further away from your relative’s place. This way you can have a nice walk with your family! If you’re looking to go the extra mile why not take the stairs instead of the elevator. By staying active, you may even start to lose weight during chinese new year!