So it’s the time of year to indulge ourselves, as we get festive with friends and family – but often this leaves us feeling sluggish, lethargic and bloated, sending us the clear message that gluttony is not our friend! It disturbs our gut flora, spikes our blood sugar and places tremendous stress on our vital organs!
So how can we indulge and pamper ourselves this Christmas without compromising our health?
- Spend extra time with close family and dear friends. This is so uplifting and good for us in so many ways – by producing those happy hormones – endorphins, as we feel contentment in the company of those who are the most special to us.
- Enjoy a glass of homemade organic mulled wine – made with herbs and spices that benefit the health such as cinnamon (to balance blood sugar), orange peel (to boost glutathione), and cloves ( to boost immunity). If we make it ourselves we can ensure the wine is a good one, and not full of artificial chemical flavours.
- Make some healthy mince pies – try using spelt flour for the pastry instead of wheat, and combining dried fruits, lemon juice, an apple, orange zest, and some maple syrup and spices for the filling.
- Give to those who are less fortunate, or you feel really need to be receiving at this time of year – some food for someone homeless, a thoughtful gift to an orphanage, or spend an afternoon having tea with someone who would otherwise be lonely – perhaps in a care home for example.
- Offer the gift of love to everyone you meet. Smile, say hello or merry Christmas and spread good will to as many folk as possible.
- Treat yourself to a wonderfully de-stressing bath, with some natural candles, some carefully chosen essential oils, and some gentle music.
- Make sure your Christmas dinner is loaded with lots of veggies, and make the meat portion of your plate the smallest part. Choose baked apples in cinnamon drizzled in warmed honey for your Christmas pud, (or try my recipe below for a healthy version of the Scottish Christmas pudding – Clooty Dumpling)
- Make sure there’s plenty of healthy nuts and dried fruits around for those indulgent snacks, instead of sweets, cakes and pies!
Have a wonderfully indulgent Christmas, where you put your own health at the top of your Christmas wish list!
Clooty Dumpling with a Healthy Twist
250gms spelt flour
250gms dried fruit
1tsp baking soda
pinch of nutmeg
small piece of fresh ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
25gms coconut sugar
1/2 tbsp of date or maple syrup
zest of an orange
Combine all of the ingredients above and then add 75gms butter, 1 egg and coconut milk and knead into a dough
Place a damp, clean tea towel in a heat proof bowl, and sprinkle with spelt flour. Place the dough in the centre and tie securely. Place the bowl in a saucepan of water to make a Bain Marie. Cook for 3 hours on a medium/low heat, topping up the water as necessary.
Remove from cloth and bake in a warm oven until the top is dry and gently cristed.
Serve with homemade custard or organic fresh cream.