Easter is finally upon us and there is chocolate in all shapes and sizes, around every turn at the grocery store! While we may be looking forward to indulging in these sweet treats over the coming Easter break, it is important to be mindful about just how much you and your family are consuming, not only for the benefit of your health, but to also reduce the risk of riding that sugar-induced high and subsequent low! But don't sweat it, we are here to show you that it is still possible to enjoy a sweet treat without the guilt, as well as staying on track with your health goals! By following our top 10 tips, we'll help you to avoid having an Easter weekend you’ll regret.
Our Top 10 Tips to finding a healthy balance this Easter:
1. Choose good fats, protein & vegetables to fill out your meals – which can assist with stabilising blood sugar levels, as well as keep you feeling fuller for longer. Look to include lean meats, seafood, eggs, avocados, nuts & seeds, legumes, plenty of colourful veggies, and oils such as olive oil.
2. Stay hydrated – look to drink plenty of water as it can help curb cravings. Hunger signals can easily get mixed up, so the next time you feel hungry, have a glass of water first and see if that helps. Also try to avoid soft drinks and juices, which contribute to raising blood sugar levels and include empty calories. If you don't like drinking plain water, try adding fresh lemon, lime or mint to your water, or even try herbal teas.
3. Decide in advance what treats you will allow yourself and stick to it - decide on your chocolate of choice and purchase the smallest version of it, giving yourself permission to enjoy the holiday without the guilt!
4. Don't buy chocolate in bulk - did you know a large Easter bunny egg can contain up to 1075 calories, whereas a small hollow egg only has around 72 calories, so where possible go for the smaller option, savouring the flavour.
5. Designate chocolate for dessert – designating a specific time to eat your Easter bounty, particularly after a meal, will help prevent overindulgence. Eating your chocolate on an empty stomach will only spike blood sugar levels, increasing your desire for more.
6. Monitor alcohol intake - alcohol can cloud your judgment, making that second and third Easter egg sound like a good idea. So stay hydrated by drinking water in between alcoholic drinks.
7. Sharing is caring - If you are lucky enough to receive an abundance of chocolate eggs, share them with friends, family or even work colleagues, as a way to prevent further temptation and regretful overindulgence.
8. Try dark or raw chocolate - make sure your chocolate is a good quality chocolate, as the darker the chocolate the more antioxidants, so chocolate with at least 70% cocoa is a good option. Raw chocolate (cacao) is also packed with antioxidants, calcium and potassium.
9. Cravings – denying your food cravings is likely to end with in overindulgenece. Remember that Easter is a special occasion and it is okay to indulge in some chocolate.
10. Get active – look to get active with friends and family over the Easter break, by going for walks, bike riding, or playing a game of footy together.