10 Tips to Give You a Fitter Body this January

Is your New Year’s resolution to lose weight or eat better? Here are some top ideas to get you started
ByDawn GibsonTuesday , 31 December 2013
10 Tips to Give You a Fitter Body this January

Elizabeth Peyton-Jones, the author of Eat Yourself Young and one of the UK’s most trusted diet experts, knows a thing or two about getting through the temptations of the holiday season without piling on the kilos. If you over-indulged at Christmas or are just looking for a way to kick-start some healthier habits this January, try some of her tips: 

  • Instead of excluding things from your diet, try adding some things, such as a morning juice (try spinach, kale, celery, ginger, apple, lemon) or a parsley or ginger and lemon tea.
  • Make sure your breakfast contains some protein (eg egg, fish, a few nuts or seeds) so you won't feel hungry and want to snack mid-morning.
  • Sugar is the new addiction but you can't avoid it over the holidays – or can you? Make dates your treat instead of pastries and chocolates, just as sweet but more nutritious.
  • Swap coffee (even decaf) for herbal teas. There are so many flavours readily available now which are also therapeutic like mint for digestion, rosemary for memory, chamomile for bedtime, sage for hot flushes and liquorice to ease stress.
  • Going out on the town? Try dipping some rye bread into a little olive oil (flavour with herbs if preferred) beforehand. It's a great way to line and protect your stomach.
  • Downsize your plate and cutlery size.  Eat slowly, put down your knife and fork between mouthfuls – if you eat quickly, try using chopsticks.
  • People coming round for drinks and snacks? Ditch unhealthy crisps and make your own nutrient-rich veg thins instead. Peel and thinly slice sweet potatoes, parsnips and beetroot, place in a single layer on a baking tray (no oil needed) and cook at 200C for about 15 minutes until crispy.
  • Take an Epsom salts bath: it's alkalizing, skin soothing and helps your body get rid of toxins.
  • Try a short, sharp detox over the holidays: stay off two of the following food groups for two days: wheat, dairy, sugar. To make yourself feel more vital, energetic and younger, eat something anti-inflammatory (ginger, turmeric, omega fats), antioxidant (bright vegetables, reds, oranges and blues especially), and alkalizing (anything green or lemon/lime).
  • Snack raw: throughout the holiday season, eat 25 percent raw fruit and veg if you can – as well as the usual apples, carrots and celery, try pumpkin, squash, green beans, cauliflower, beetroot and cabbage. It’s tough but fabulous for your skin, hair and waistline so you'll start 2014 in the greatest shape ever.