After what has been a really tough year, Easter celebrations this year may see us overindulge; food, drink and more chocolate and sweets than you care to imagine! When we have had little to celebrate and enjoy, those tasty treats that we associate with this time of year – chocolates eggs, hot cross buns. May prove ever harder to resist than normal.
Follow our top tips to help you get the balance right this Easter!
- Start with a Healthy breakfast
Starting the day with a healthy breakfast will help to fill you up and stop you grazing throughout the day. This is especially important over Easter as we often find chocolate eggs and other high sugar foods are readily available.
If you have skipped breakfast, you will be more likely to grab a quick chocolate fix to curb your hunger later in the day. You are also missing out on an opportunity to have a nutritious meal which would provide you with long lasting energy and a variety of vitamins and minerals.
- Eat slowly
Sitting down to eat your Easter eggs mindfully will help you to enjoy and appreciate the rich chocolatey flavour whilst also helping you to keep track of how much chocolate you have consumed. Remember, you don’t have to eat all of your Easter chocolate in one go!
It takes around 20 minutes once food or drink is consumed before we start to experience feelings of satiety (feeling of fullness). Our body sends signals once food has entered the gut ready for digestion and absorption, which prompts us to stop eating as we are satisfied and full.
Savouring every mouthful will help you to slow down and eat less during those critical 20 minutes, reducing your chance of eating to a point of uncomfortable fullness.
- Stock up on healthy snacks
Make sure you have a variety of snacks available during Easter, including fresh fruit and vegetables, unsalted nuts, wholegrain cracker and cheese, boiled eggs. Variety is key and too much of anything, even chocolate eggs, can get tiresome.
- Make your own version of traditional Easter foods
Hot cross buns are often eaten on Good Friday. Make your own homemade buns and experiment with flavour and ingredients, for example swap white flour for wholemeal flour, and add different dried fruit for example apricots, cranberries, or dried apple!
- Get active.
Make the most of the spring sunshine and go for a family walk. Quickening your pace will help you increase your heart rate and count towards your daily recommendation of moderate intensity physical activity. Put on your favourite music and simply dance around your house.
If you have young children complete and Easter egg hunt, get creative with arts and crafts, or have a mini sports day in a local park or you back garden.
- Pick dark, cocoa-rich chocolate eggs.
No one wants you to have a chocolate free Easter so switching to dark chocolate with a high cocoa percentage can be helpful. Quality dark chocolate contains cocoa flavanols which can help to with circulation and can have a benefit to heart health. It’s important to remember that all types of chocolate are high in energy, saturated fat and sugar, so consuming them in small amounts is advisable. As dark chocolate is very rich as smaller portion can provide satisfaction compared with milk or white chocolate.
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