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Health 15 June 2018
By: Natasha Tanga

How to Keep Yourself Healthy During Eid Celebration

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After enduring a month of fasting, it is about time for all the Muslims to celebrate during Eid. It is no stranger that feasts are usually being held during this time of the year, and they are filled with delicious foods. However, you might want to control your appetite so it doesn't ruin your health in the long run. On this week's journal, we will share with you a number of useful tips to keep yourself healthy during the Eid celebrations.

1. Choose your food wisely

This time of the year means holiday treats like cookies and sweets are scattered freely everywhere you go. It’s a wonder to see, unless you are trying to lose weight or gain control of emotional eating and overeating. How then do you enjoy your holidays while still taking control of what you put in your mouth? 

Do not waste precious space on your stomach by overeating on cookies and junk food that you don't really like just because they are sitting there or because someone else is eating them. Save your extra calories for special foods you enjoy during this time of year. Think about what’s worth it, and then choose foods that will give you the most satisfaction.

2. Study your battleground before going in for the kill

It's wise to have plans and make decisions ahead of time about what you are truly interested in savoring and indulging in and the portion that you will take. Look around at your options before grabbing a plate, this way you don’t fill up on a mediocre food and then keep eating when you realize what else is there.

Knowing that you're going to eat the really special stuff means you won’t feel deprived when skipping on the less favourable choices. If you're feeling adventurous, however, serve yourself a tasting portion. By serving yourself and stopping to eat and really taste it, you’ll enjoy it more and probably eat less.

3. Portion control

Just as you would on normal days, don't eat past the point of fullness. You would rather enjoy every single thing you consume on the table rather than just shoving them down your throat to stuff your stomach; that won't feel enjoyable at all. By paying attention to your portion, you can still indulge in your favorite foods instead of banning them completely. You can eat larger portions of healthy foods balanced with smaller portions of more indulgent and high-calorie choices. Also, consider asking for something to take home; knowing you can have it again later can help curb the desire to overeat during the event.

4. Don't let yourself overeat

Going awfully hungry to attend a feast sets you up for a trap that means eating more and have less impulse control. To help you gain more control during holiday feasts, try eating an apple, a portion of fruits or a cup of vegetable soup before you arrive. The fiber contained in the foods significantly increases the sensation of satiety and may help you want to eat less at dinner. While this might sound like a hindrance and defeats the purpose for you to enjoy supposedly fun feasts, your scale and clothes will thank you afterwards. 

5. Strategize your meal 

Protein is your best bet for achieving satiety and minimizing fat storage. By consuming only protein before digging into carbs and other types of food, you'll feel satiated and less likely to overeat high-carb foods, fatty foods, or both.

Also, it's highly recommended if you don't ignore those leafy greens lying somewhere on the table because holiday feasts don't mean you can ignore your well-being completely. Consuming more protein and fiber make you feel full faster, thus guaring you from binging on other high calorie foods, such as desserts.

6. Limit liquid calories

When we drink our calories instead of eat them, we do not tend to register fullness and we often end up consuming extra unnecessary calories. The beverage you tend to take for granted are often the culprit for putting that extra weight, such as soft drinks. These are empty calories; meaning their calories might be equivalent to those cookies you've just eaten, but you don't realize it as you can freely chug them down without feeling full. Therefore, it's best to drink only water during a feast.

7. Don’t forget to do some physical activity 

Now that the fasting month is over, there's more reason for you to get back on track with your usual routine of calorie burning workouts. Even moreso, the meals you've eaten during Hari Raya keeps you even more responsible to your body and health in general. It never hurts to devote time to be active, especially on those days you have a holiday meal planned. Suit your exercise to your own preference, such as going on a family hike, jog with friends, going cycling, or even challenging yourself to more intense exercises such as weight training or rock climbing. 

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