If you have kids or threw a Halloween party, there's no doubt trick-or-cheating has sent your diet completely off the rails. Here are some simple ways to minimize the damage and get back on a healthy track:
Get back to normal eating habits
If you overdid it on sugary treats you may be feeling tired, jittery and have cravings for more sugar. Nip that in the bud by eating clean, nutritious meals and snacks. Fill up on high-fiber fruits, vegetables and whole grains that act like a detox, soaking up waste and ushering it out of your system. To take the guesswork out of what you are going to eat, plan your healthier meals and treats for the coming week.
Fill up on fiber and protein
Don’t skip meals thinking it will offset your candy splurge. Instead, have small meals that combine foods rich in protein and fiber, such as Greek yogurt and berries for breakfast and broiled fish and spinach for a main meal. Fiber and protein digest slowly and this helps steady blood sugar levels while stimulating hormones that help metabolize the excess sugar your body has stored.
Sip warm water
Sip a cup of warm water in the morning to jump-start your digestive system and cleanse away toxins. Studies have shown that compared to ice water, warm water is faster at breaking down foods for easier digestion. Also, it’s important to stay hydrated because thirst mimics hunger – leaving you vulnerable to overeat when all you need is a drink of zero-calorie water – warm or icy cold.
A candy binge is bound to leave your feeling tired, but rather than take a nap get physically active. Even a quick workout, taking a brisk walk or doing some chores, in combination with eating right and staying hydrated, will help you burn calories and re-energize as your body flushes out the excess sugar.
Even small amounts of vitamin C can help reduce sweet cravings. Great sources of vitamin C include: citrus fruits such as orange and grapefruit, as well as cantaloupe, pineapple and berries such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, cranberries. Opt for the whole food instead of juice, which may be sweetened with sugar!
For more tips on healthy eating, drinking and losing weight, and for delicious high fiber meal plans and recipes, check out my latest book, The Miracle Carb Diet: Make Calories and Fat Disappear – with Fiber!
Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD, is a registered dietitian in New York City and the author of two bestselling diet books: The Miracle Carb Diet: Make Calories and Fat Disappear – with fiber and The F-Factor Diet. Follow Tanya on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn