10 Tips for a healthier Easter
It's just over a week until Easter, and for most of us that means some time off work, and some of our favourite treats - Easter eggs and hot cross buns! But chowing down on all that chocolate isn't the best news for your diet, even though a little of what you fancy is fine, in moderation. Luckily there are some things you can do to ensure that your Easter break isn't all bad news for your body. We've got some super tips to ensure this Easter is your healthiest one yet!
#1. Keep the Easter eggs for easter
It can be tempting to pick up a brightly coloured, foil wrapped bunny or a bag of Mini Eggs on your weekly shop, before Easter arrives - and even more tempting to start eating that chocolate before Easter! Easter eggs have been on the shelves for months now, so make sure you don't actually eat them before Easter. If you think you'll be tempted, wait until closer to the time to buy eggs for friends and family; and don't buy any chocolate for yourself. Hopefully you'll receive Easte gifts from loved ones, so you won't need to be tempted by purchasing your own chocolate! Promise yourself you won't eat any treats until Easter Sunday, then you can enjoy a day of indulgence without feeling guilty.
#2. Opt for quality over quantity
When choosing an Easter egg, opt for one which contains high-quality chocolate. The highest percentage of cocoa you can find means you're getting a better quality of egg, and dark chocolate is better for you; it's loaded with antioxidants and you're likely to eat less of it, which means you won't be tempted to polish off the whole egg in one sitting! The better the chocolate, the more you will take the time to relax and savour it, which means you're more likely to stop eating when you feel full.
#3. Balance out your calories
The Expertrain team will definitely be indulging in some chocolatey goodness this Easter, but we know it's all about balance. So if we're having some chocolate for a treat, we'll balance our calorie intake throughout the day - perhaps a lighter breakfast or a salad for lunch? Even cutting out something you would normally have, such as a sugary coffee in the morning, means that your chocolate treat won't be as noticeable in the grand scheme of things. If you really have to indulge, just make sure you keep up with your workouts over the Easter break - even 30 minutes at the gym can make a difference to your fitness levels and boost your mood!
#4. Enjoy eggs this Easter Sunday
Not chocolate eggs - the real deal! Eggs are the perfect breakfast. They're packed with protein and amino acids and they can help you to feel fuller for longer. Try whipping up an omelette, enjoy scrambled eggs or make an egg with toast soldiers. Or have a go at our very own breakfast favourite, smashed avocado toast with a poached egg!
#5. Make the focus family fun
Easter doesn't have to be all about food. It's nice to treat your family to a Sunday roast and the kids love Easter eggs, but you can make the focus on fun, not food. Talk about the Easter Bunny and the food he loves to eat - healthy carrot sticks, celery and cucumber, roll some eggs down a hill, spend the morning painting eggs or have an Easter egg hunt in the garden; the kids can enjoy some chocolate at the end of a busy day!
#6. Try a home-made Easter
Instead of buying sugar and fat-laden confectionery from your local supermarket, why not make your own treats at home this Easter? Baking and cooking with the kids is a great way to teach them about healthy eating - and if they learn whilst they're younger, they're more likely to grow up to become fit, healthy adults. Bake some healthy hot cross buns, teach them how to use eggs to make an omelette for breakfast or buy some moulds and make home-made chocolate bunnies. Delicious, and healthier than store-bought treats as you can control the ingredients!
#7. Opt for smaller treats
Forget about those giant Easter eggs that could take you days to eat - opt for smaller, individually wrapped treats, so you won't be tempted to consume too many calories. Using mini wrapped creme eggs or similar for an Easter egg hunt for the kids always goes down well, and if it's just you and your other half this Easter, sharing a small bag of eggs is much better for you than chowing down on a whole chocolate egg each!
#8. Fill up on veggies
On Easter Sunday, don't dive straight into the roast or spend all afternoon picking at the cheesboard and nibbling sweets. Fill up with plenty of healthy vegetables during your main meal - these will not only count towards your five a day but the fibre will also help to fill you up, so you'll be less likely to eat as much sweet or fatty stuff later on.
#9. Snack smart over the holidays
Ensuring you remember that chocolate is a treat means you won't be tempted to fill up on sugary eggs and other sweet treats over Easter. Keep the chocolate for dessert, as eating chocolate eggs on an empty stomach could lead to a spike in blood sugar levels, followed by an energy crash which will just leave you craving more of the sweet stuff! Stick to your normal diet as much as possible and allow yourself the occasional treat - healthy, protein-packed snacks are ideal.
#10. Allow yourself a cheat day
We're all allowed a cheat day - just make sure yours doesn't extend to cover the whole of the holidays! Pick a day - for us it will be Easter Sunday - and enjoy some tasty Easter treats. When the day is over, it's back to healthy eating and a balanced lifestyle. Remember that being healthy is all about balance, so if you've indulged and had a hearty breakfast, a lighter lunch and dinner is a great idea. Likewise if you've been for a run and had a green smoothie for breakfast, you can enjoy your roast dinner guilt-free later on!