The festive season is upon us which also means it’s the season of social gatherings and over-eating. While it’s wonderful to relax and enjoy your favourite foods over the holiday season, you also don’t want to undo all the hard work you did exercising and eating right throughout the year. Enjoying everything in moderation is the key to coming out a healthier you on the other side of the holiday season. In fact, this is a great time of the year to get active by doing fun activities such as taking walks, playing with your children in the garden or even exploring your holiday destination on foot,” says Gert Coetzee, Pharmacist and founder of The Diet Everyone Talks About.  Keep reading for Gert Coetzee’s easy-to-follow tips on maintaining your health these holidays as well as a delicious guilt-free recipe for Paleo Apple Crisp — the perfect holiday dessert!

Eat healthier holiday meals

You may be tempted to tuck into the smorgasbord of fatty, sugary, carb-filled foods over the Christmas period but try your best to steer clear of these tempting eats and treats and opt for healthier options such as whole-grains, vegetables, fruits, lean meat and seafood instead.

INfused waters

Stay hydrated

Whatever you do this festive season, make sure that you drink water every day. Why not add some strawberries, lemon, pineapples, watermelon or cucumber to your water to add some flavour? Drinking water can help you feel full and prevent you from overindulging in sugary, fizzy drinks. Being hydrated will also help prevent hangovers and sugar crashes if you happen to overindulge.

Make time for exercising

Maintaining physical activity over the holiday season can contribute to a healthier and happier lifestyle. Physical activity releases endorphins that trigger a happy feeling which is why people who exercise are less stressed and generally live longer, happier lives. This is the time when friends and family come together so why not get them involved? Come up with fun activities that you can all enjoy while bonding and getting in some exercise.

FitKey Gym

Avoid sweet ‘after meal’ snacks

It’s not easy to say no to the sweets, chocolates and cakes that come out after a wholesome meal but if you are going to have an after-dinner snack, keep your portion size small or go for healthier options. Try snacking on healthy treats such as nuts, berries, biltong, chocolate dipped fruit skewers and whole-wheat biscuits or crackers with a healthy dip such as guacamole.

And, if you simply must have dessert try this healthier dessert option – moreish gluten-free Paleo Apple Crisp!

Paleo Apple Crisp

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

1 green apple
Grated zest of 1 orange
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the topping:

¾ cup almond flour
¾ cup coconut flour
1/2 cup coconut sugar

1/2 teaspoon sea salt
¾ cup organic coconut flakes
½ pound cold pasture-raised butter, diced

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 176,7 C. Butter an oval baking dish
Peel, core, and cut the apples into large wedges.
Combine the apples with the zests, juices, and spices. Pour into the dish.

Topping:

Combine the flour, coconut sugar, salt, coconut flakes, mix thoroughly.
Add in the cold butter in the bowl with the dry ingredients.
Using a pastry cutter (or your hands), mash and cut the butter into the dry ingredients for several minutes, until you have pieces the size of peas.
Scatter the topping evenly over the apples.

Place the crisp on a sheet pan and bake for 40-45 minutes until the top is brown and the apples are bubbly.
Serve warm.
Add some fresh whipped cream for a decadent yet healthy dessert.

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