Christmas is a time to celebrate. With plenty of family get togethers, parties and general festive cheer, there may also be a tendency to overindulge which doesn’t always leave us feeling so cheerful! So here are a few tips to help you enjoy a happy, healthy festive season.
1. Don’t go to a party hungry. It can lead to sugar cravings, encouraging you to eat more than you usually would.
2. Make good alcohol choices. Avoid creamy or sweet drinks. Try to drink with food to reduce the impact of the sugars on your bloodstream.
3. Get moving. Enjoy brisk walks with family and friends.
4. Drink plenty of water. This will encourage you not to overeat and will also improve how you feel the next day! 5. Be kind to yourself. If you happen to overindulge, enjoy whatever you are indulging in and get back on track afterwards.
Christmas Cake Recipe
This cake was devised for those with blood sugar problems and digestive issues, but it’s a delicious lower sugar alternative for all the family. The cake keeps for up to a week and can be frozen.
Ingredients • 170g pitted prunes • 115g dried apple rings • 115g dried apricots • 50ml brandy or tea • 1 small apple wash & grate • zest and juice of 1 orange • 1 tsp ground ginger • 1⁄2 tsp ground cinnamon • 1⁄2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg • 1 tsp vanilla essence • 170g soft butter • 85g xylitol • 4 medium eggs • 85g ground almonds • 85g wholemeal flour • 1 tsp baking powder 1. The day before you make the cake, chop the dried fruit into a bowl and pour over the brandy / tea. Leave overnight (stir occasionally).
2. Line a 20cm deep cake tin with a double layer of greaseproof paper. Set the oven to 160 C (150 C fan assisted) gas mark 2. 3. Cream the butter and xylitol, then stir in the chopped fruit, orange zest and grated apple. Add the vanilla and spices and beat the eggs in, one at a time.
4. Stir in the ground almonds, rice bran and baking powder. Finally stir in the juice from half the orange, adding more if necessary to make a soft consistency.
5. Pour into the cake tin and level the top. Tie a double thickness of baking paper around the outside with string.
6. Bake for 1 ½ – 2 hours until a skewer comes out clean. If the top is getting too dark, put a piece of foil over it. As soon as it is cool enough to touch, put a piece of foil tightly over the top and leave until completely cold - this softens the top of the cake.
7. Remove from the tin and wrap in a double thickness of foil.
Rebecca Tucker is a Registered Nutritional Therapist practising at The Natural Healthcare Centre in Burton. For more festive recipe ideas visit www.nourishbalanceglow.com