Surely, most of us will be having a hard time controlling our diets and looking out for our health this season. I know it’s difficult to avoid scrumptious meals when feasts are inviting you, left and right. However, it’s essential for us to remember to only consume foods & drinks in moderation.
That being said, this advice is applicable to everyone the whole year round, but most importantly, during this Christmas season.
A Filipino staple during special occasions. To others, Christmas won’t be complete without a Lechon and ham on the table. However, eating Lechon does more harm than good. The temporary satisfaction might be equivalent to lifetime hypertension.
While cholesterol is not necessarily bad, going beyond what is recommended can cause a serious setback to one’s health.
Lechon’s main charm is its crispy skin which contains most of its fatty parts. Therefore, people already suffering from heart disease and hypertension should steer away from the dish. A healthy alternative for this would be white meat or fish.
No matter what the occasion, Filipinos will always have their rice. Unfortunately, too much of this is a definite no-no. Especially white rice which can spike blood sugar levels. Due to its highly processed nature, Harvard Medical School labeled it as having the same effect as eating pure table sugar.
Eating white rice in moderation won’t pose too much of a problem. However, this Christmas when the table is overflowing with unhealthy options, cut back on the rice. If you really can’t appreciate a dish without rice, I suggest having alternatives like brown rice or red rice. Those are much healthier compared to white rice.
Don’t. Just don’t have this, please. It’s like you’re drinking pure sugar with a tiny amount of water. If you don’t already have heart disease and diabetes, drinking soft drinks together with all those unhealthy meals is just you begging to get sick. Too much of this can even harm the kidney and weaken the bones.
Stick to water as much as possible. If you’re really looking for other drinks to take aside from water, try out unsweetened iced teas, coconut water, and even sparkling flavored water. It’s refreshing and promotes many health benefits.
Additionally, if you’re planning to drink alcohol, drink it in moderation. These liquid calories can really add up and make you binge eat.
Just because it has fruits doesn’t mean it’s automatically healthy!
There’s no problem eating Fruit Salads in small amounts. However, when eaten in large batches, it could lead to health problems. The canned fruits are swimming in saturated fats, added sugars, and preservatives from all the cream. It’s also high in fat, cholesterol, and sodium.
A few spoonfuls are enough, don’t eat the whole container. A healthier alternative for this would be a vegetable salad swimming in balsamic vinaigrette or olive oil. However, don’t literally make it swim, a few dashes here and there of the dressing would be enough.
Cakes and Pastries
Noche Buena and Media Noche won’t be complete without cakes and pastries. Most cakes contain ingredients that are not exactly healthy for us, like butter and flour. Take a chocolate cake, for example, the average calories a slice would get you is around 500. If you’re really craving that sweet taste, instead of buying store-made pastries make the effort to bake your own.
Opt for healthier options like dark chocolate. Take these sweets in moderation and you’ll be fine. A few bites should be enough to satisfy cravings. More than a slice is already too much and can be dangerous for your health.
The Christmas season is really the season of festivities. Therefore, feasts are an inevitable part of this tradition. However, while there are countless meals to choose from, it is important that we know how to eat these in moderation. Choose your health first before those temporary cravings.
Cristine Joy is a broadcasting major with a deep passion and obsession for reading and writing. She's the type of person that would lie to herself saying "one last chapter is all I need for a good night's sleep" then proceeds to finish the whole story until dawn. Her tenacity is what makes her believe that writing is not simply just a talent, rather it's a skill that one can continuously improve upon practice.