First things first, we’re not here to advocate drinking your tits off, and extreme partying.

We’re advocates of moderate alcohol consumption, and responsible partying, but, we’re also realists! Celebrating in style sometimes trumps responsibility. You start feeling nice, get carried away, and a couple of drinks over the course of the evening isn’t always what you end up walking away from the party with.

Then the bubbly runs dry, and reality sinks in.

We go back to work, back to our daily routines and unfortunately the holidays can leave us feeling a little heavy and run down. Even as nutritionists, we feel the weight of the season, and not all of us start our new year with pep in our step.

The weeks surrounding the holidays and into the new year tend to be filled with excess. Starting your journey into 2018 with less- less junk, less worry, less stress and less clutter will definitely help kick start the year in a healthier and happier way.

So here are The Naughty Nutritionists’ top 5 tips for making sure you can be the best and healthiest you in a way that doesn’t end up being a chore.

 

1. DITCH THE JUNK

 

Rule of thumb- if you surround yourself with addictive food, you will always be eating that food. So, new year, new intentions… purge the junk!

Junk food is an obstacle that prevents you from moving forward with your health goals. Really though, it’s pretty hard to not give into Chester Cheeta’s seductive stare every time you open your cupboard doors. So say buh-bye! Also, keep in mind- kids shouldn’t be an excuse. Bad food habits tend to start from childhood, so be mindful of what the kiddos are consuming.

A REALISTIC GOAL: Go through everything 1 by 1, and write a list: ‘Things to ditch’ and ‘Things to keep’. Have a few items that you are unwilling to rid of, and then tell yourself you’ll ditch the rest. That way you won’t feel totally deprived, and you can set up goals to eventually get your cupboards the way you want in the upcoming months.

Take This Healthy Cupboards Quiz to See if Your Pantry Needs a Little TLC.

 

2. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS

 

You’ve definitely heard that you need to hydrate so we’ll keep this short and sweet, water is essential for life.

The human body consists of around 70% water so of course it is vital to stay hydrated. Not only is water needed to support life, but water keeps your electrolytes balanced, keeps you feeling full, gives you energy and can help detoxify the body. Aim for filtered water with fresh lemon as opposed to tap, but don’t let tap water stop you. Just make sure you are drinking. Another way to get fluids in is soups, smoothies and decaffeinated tea such as: chamomile, ginger, nettle, peppermint, lemon and/or turmeric. These teas are incredibly nourishing and aid detoxification.

A REALISTIC GOAL: Buy a water bottle and bring it everywhere with you! Make sure you sip on it throughout the day and it’s being re-filled a couple times throughout the day. Feel free to add fresh fruit to it, decaf tea, smoothies or soups. Just keep hydrated.

3. AIM FOR A DIET FILLED WITH MOSTLY WHOLE FOODS

 

How many times do you grab a prepackaged food at the grocery store, read the front of the label, think it sounds great and then plop it into your cart excited to test it out?

Labels are notoriously misleading.

Often times the foods that look and sound most delicious are loaded with preservatives, emulsifiers, colours, additives, sugar and salt. It makes our bodies work a little bit harder to process these ‘non-food’ foods, and slows down our metabolism. Be careful what you are eating, try to eat whole foods, cooked from scratch more. If you do pick up prepackaged or processed foods, read the label and avoid foods you cant pronounce, try to avoid added sugars (especially refined) and salt. And if you are super busy we have some great tips for you in Eating Healthy When Your Life Is Hectic: Part 1 Quick Meals & Snacks.

A REALISTIC GOAL: Start reading your labels! Everything you buy that’s prepackaged, look at the ‘Ingredients’ and ‘Sugar’ levels first. Make informed decisions of whether or not that food is going to help or hinder your goals.

Note: Not all prepackaged food is necessarily bad, here are 10 of our favourites.

4. EAT LESS MEAT

 

We’re not in a position to tell you to stop eating meat! As a matter of fact, neither one of us is vegan.

But, contrary to what some popular diets are touting lately (achem *keto), too much meat can be harmful on the body, especially red meat. The fact is that not only have our portions gotten bigger (10-12 oz. steaks), we’re now used to consuming meat at every meal: bacon for breakfast, chicken salad for lunch and a steak for dinner.

Animal protein might be high in iron, protein and B12 but it lacks fiber, antioxidants and other vital vitamins and minerals- all nutrients that you can get from eating a plant based meal. High fat animal protein (especially red meat) is also known to raise cholesterol levels and in excess can be pro-inflammatory.

A REALISTIC GOAL: Consider making one meal a week that’s vegetarian, and try not to eat processed meat (organic and grass fed is best). If the health consequences of eating too much meat isn’t enough incentive, eating vegetarian every so often is much better for the planet that we live on and the air we breathe, so it also helps make the planet a healthier place to live!

5. EAT MORE VEGGIES, FIBER & PROBIOTIC RICH FOODS

 

Try not to think of fruits and veggies as a side dish, but as a main dish with a side of grains and protein.

If you are not a huge salad eater, smoothies, soups, stews, and roasting veggies are an amazing and delicious way to eat vegetables. Veggies are also high in fiber which will keep your gut nice and clean and promote healthy gut bacteria growth. Probiotic rich foods such as: yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso and tempeh are great to add to your diet that help keep your tummy filled with the friendly bacteria that aid the detoxification process.

A REALISTIC GOAL: Test out 1 new probiotic or fiber rich food a week that you normally wouldn’t. You would be pleasantly surprised how delicious kimchi is with eggs, or miso soup can be on a cool and chilly day!

Bottom line:

you most likely won’t find us telling you to count calories, rate your meals as a number system or have you constantly worrying over your food. We want you to love what you eat, feel good about food and feel good about yourself. And the nutritionists’ community is surrounded by wonderful people who feel the same about promoting a healthy lifestyle. So we have rounded up some delicious and wonderful recipes by some pretty amazing nutritionsists.

3 Easy And Nourishing Recipes From Our Nutritionists’ Community

 

Sugar free energy bites

Energy Bites

These Energy Bites are sugar-free, snack-sized bites loaded with protein, fiber, healthy fats and blood sugar stabilizing cinnamon. They are an amazing treat for detoxing and cleansing because they lack any added sugars but are made with dates so they have that sweetness that you look for in an afternoon snack.

We recommend either keeping these in ball form or pressing them into an 8x8 pan and cutting them into bars. You can also add nut butters/ hemp seeds or chia seeds for that extra bit of plant based protein!

This recipe is courtesy of Nicolle Bergeron from Nutrition With NicolleCheck out Nicolle on facebook at Nutrition with Nicolle or follow her on twitter @nwithnicolle!

 

Simple Kale Salad With Creamy Garlic Dressing 

simple kale salad

This Simple Kale Salad with Creamy Garlic Dressing is the perfect addition to your weekly meals where you want to make the salad on the table stand out! The dressing was designed to add an abundance of flavour, and take the bitterness out of the kale.

Kale is incredibly nutrient dense green, and makes healthy eating and cleansing in the new year, that much easier!

This recipe was contributed by Jessica from Jessica Mitton, Holistic Nutrition. Check out Jessica’s many delicious recipes and nutrition tips by following her here

Winter Squash, Leek & Vegetable Soup

winter squash leek soup

We find soup to be one of the most cleansing, and beneficial foods for your digestion, your healthy gut bacteria, and your immune system. This Winter Squash, Leek & Vegetable Soup is made with a load of veggies, it’s vegan, gluten-free and incredibly warming and delicious.

Start your new year right with this incredibly nutrient dense soup!

This refreshing recipe was sent by Rebecca Thornton from Wild Seed Holistic Healing. You can follow her on Facebook here. 

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