Few things have the capacity to destroy a healthy lifestyle more than a string of weddings. Or, to put it more specifically, a string of big fat Indian weddings. Where food is one of the main attractions of the event. And where not eating offends the host. Or, at least, that is what we believe.
It is easier than you think to be a serial attender without being a cereal offender. You can marry a hectic social life with a healthy lifestyle and not have to worry about losing post-seasonal weight. All it takes is a little preparation, a little discipline and small shift in your mindset for you to have a more healthful experience. Some dos and don’ts:
DON’T Eat To Please
While the overwhelming perception is that hosts take offence if you don’t eat at their wedding, the larger truth is that they are far too busy managing the needs of the hundreds of guests they have invited. All most hosts want is appreciation: appreciation of the décor, appreciation of the food, appreciation of their hospitality. If you don’t want to eat, do genuinely appreciate their efforts instead, and you’d be surprised at how much you have already pleased them. Additionally, if the host asks if you have eaten, you can always postpone: say that you’d be eating later while acknowledging that everything looks delicious. Chances are they’d be far too busy to ask you again.
Step it up during wedding season, both literally and metaphorically. It doesn’t have to be elaborate: something as simple as a daily brisk walk to walking up the stairs instead of taking the elevator to something more appointment-led like aerobics class or a gym session. The point is to keep moving. Exercise for 60 minutes 5-6 times a week at least to counter the effects of this season.
DON’T Go Hungry
It’ll be hard for you to stick to your good intentions if you get to the wedding famished. Have some soup and a salad before you go. Or even a full meal. The more you eat at home, the lesser you will eat at the wedding. You can then focus on the conversation, not on the people. If it’s a smaller function at someone’s home, you can even volunteer to bring your own food or even dessert (sweetened with Sugar Free Green, for example, instead of the usual).
Water, that is. Studies suggest that dehydration impacts the proper functioning of the body, and with that your body’s ability to burn fat. And do try and stay off the alcohol – especially creamy cocktails and mocktails. If you can stick to one small 60ml glass of white wine, or – better yet – a white wine spritzer, you’d be able to give your friends company while serving the needs of your body at the same time. If water is too boring, try some lemon water or soda sweetened with Sugar Free Green, or even some water with berries in it. Yum.
DON’T Cheat on your Sleep
You have to snooze to lose. While this may be the hardest bit of advice to follow during a hectic social season, there is a strong link between sleep deprivation and weight gain. Sleep in if you can, and try not to overdo the drinking because that will worsen the quality of your sleep. It takes a few adjustments to figure out what works for you but when you do, you will thank yourself. As will your body.