Healthy Holiday Spirits

At the end of the year, feasts with family and friends commonly encourage consumption of food and of drink. How do you make sure this annual occurrence doesn’t turn bad for you? You simply have to manage quantity AND quality.

Drinking Quantity

Wine makes the point. For example, is red wine good for you or bad for you.

* One to two glasses per day is said to be good for your heart.

* One to two bottles per day will turn your liver into a brick.

The bottom line is that wine is NOT good for you, and wine is NOT bad for you … until you make it that way. Over-consumption changes this drink from one that is healthy, to one that is not.

The same is true for all spirits, and the holiday season is the perfect time to make the point: controlled consumption keeps the holiday happy, but also healthy!

 

Drinking Quality

There are differences in taste between different beers, wines, and spirits, but that’s not what I’m talking about. In this sense, quality doesn’t apply to the flavor of the drink but to the nutritional aspects. And once you have the quantity issue worked out (see above), improving the quality of the drinks is the next piece of the puzzle.

  • It’s very simple. Cut the sugar.
  • A standard egg nog is like twelve thousand calories.
  • If you have mixers, don’t used colas or other sugar sweetened drinks.
  • Drinks served at restaurants sound wonderful on their menu descriptions, but are very commonly over-sweetened.

This is important because sugar consumption is not only high in calories, but it also can affect your insulin balance in a way that makes you more tired and hungry in the long term — moving less, and eating more!

So this November, if you have drinks with alcohol at all, limit the volume. A good solution is to have a glass of water between each drink. Also, if you make a commitment to remove the sugars from your drinks you’ll be just as likely to reduce your caloric load as you will to reduce your food cravings!

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