7 practical tips for avoiding Christmas excess
At Christmas you may be tempted to drink more than usual. It’s a time of year to have fun but it can be easy to overindulge. Here are some simple tips to stay in control of your drinking while enjoying the festive season.
1. Understand what’s in your glass
The best way to avoid Christmas excess to drink within lower risk daily guidelines of 2-3 units for women, 3-4 for men.
Seasonal drinks can have a surprisingly high unit and calorie content. A 175ml glass of mulled wine contains around 2.3 units and 134 calories.
2. Downsize your drinks
If you’re a beer drinker order a half instead of a pint. Rather than a large 250ml glass of wine, opt for a smaller 175ml or 125ml glass.
The amount of units in a glass of wine varies depending on the size of the glass. An average 125ml glass of wine would be around 1.5 units, but a 250ml glass could be over 3 units.
3. Try low alcohol or alcoholfree wine
The alcohol content in normal wine ranges from 9 to 16%; however, lower alcohol and no alcohol wines are readily available. Have a look next time you’re in the supermarket.
4. Don’t drink on an empty stomach
A healthy meal before you go out, and snacks between drinks can help to slow down the absorption of alcohol, helping you stay in control. It’s best to eat before or during your work drinks. Drinking alcohol on an empty stomach means the alcohol is absorbed into your system quicker. That’s why missing dinner when going straight out from work is one of the main reasons after work drinks can get so messy.
Use a bottle stopper
5. Open a bottle of wine at home and you can feel obliged to finish off the bottle. Buy a bottle stop and your wine will stay fresh for a couple of days. You can finish it later or use leftovers in cooking. Alternatively use an ice cube tray to freeze leftover wine which can then be used as an instant ingredient to flavour your cooking for weeks to come.
6. Resist the top-up temptation
Top up your glass before it’s empty and you’ll quickly lose track of how much you’ve had. Avoid this by only topping up your glass when it’s empty.
7. Have a soft drink or water
Sipping a soft drink between alcoholic drinks will slow down the rate of your drinking. If you’re starting out early, have soft drinks for the first couple of hours before you start on the alcohol. If it’s nearing the end of the night move onto water so you consume less units.