Updated: Nov 14
No sooner than Christmas and the new year have passed, the vibrant celebrations of Chinese New Year approach. For some people maintaining good health amidst the prolonged feasting - or at least trying to - becomes essential. Not only to feel good during the festive period but also afterwards!
That's not to say that we shouldn't enjoy, we should!
Here are our tips that we use to to help you stay healthy and energised during the Lunar New Year period:
Mindful Eating and Drinking. Indulging in delicacies is a tradition but practicing portion control and mindful eating is key. Enjoy your favourite dishes - pineapple tarts, dumplings, hot pot - in moderation, savour each bite. Opt for smaller portions and balance rich foods with healthier options like fresh fruit and vegetables. We discuss the issues relting to new year weight gain and suitable dietary and eating practices in more detail here.
The snacking often starts well before and finishes after CNY itself. This is one area where restraint pays rewards in the longer term.
Stay Hydrated. It is easy to forget to drink enough water during the festivities. Stay hydrated throughout the day, especially if you're consuming salty or sugary foods. Proper hydration supports digestion, boosts energy levels, keeps you feeling full and helps you make healthier food choices. And to avoid a hangover. Drink a large glass of water first thing in the morning, before heading out or before going to bed.
Prioritise your Mental Well-Being. Chinese New Year can be both joyful and stressful. Take time for yourself to relax and unwind. Practice mindfulness, breathwork or meditation to reduce stress. Try to carve out some time, if only fine minutes, for yourself.
Social Connection. Chinese New Year is a time for family and friends. Foster social connections by spending quality time with loved ones. Engage in meaningful conversations, play interactive games. Positive social interactions contribute significantly to overall well-being. You might also need to practise social tai chi, politely learn to say ‘no’ or escape from uncomfortable situations. This can be especially useful when trying to avoid an extra, extra portion of food or dinks.
Physical Activity. Maintain your exercise routine even during the festive season. If you cannot do your usual exercise, that’s ok, just try to get something completed. A half workout is better than no workout. Consider family-friendly activities like a walk after meals or dancing with elderly relatives. Give aunty a spin!
If you are dedicated to exercise, schedule CNY as a down or deload week. Enjoy the benefits of resting the body and enjoying the holiday!
Practise Gratitude. Amidst the celebrations, take a moment to reflect on the things you're grateful for. Practicing gratitude enhances mental resilience and promotes a positive mindset. Share your gratitude with others, reinforcing bonds and creating a harmonious festive atmosphere.
Adequate Rest. Don't underestimate the power of a good night's sleep. Aim for 7-9 hours of restful sleep each night. Quality sleep boosts immunity, supports mental health, and ensures you have the energy to enjoy the festivities fully. Afterall, you've got to be well rested to party!
However you celebrate Chinese New Year: embrace tradition, pineapple tarts, loved ones and come out of the festivities feeling energised for the year ahead.
Wishing you a healthy and prosperous Chinese New Year! 恭喜发财
Alastair and Felicia
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