The weekend is a time to forget about the stresses of work and relax, spend time with your loved ones and do things that you enjoy doing, and sometimes that means indulging yourselves a little - it is the weekend after all.
Whilst enjoying a nice meal or a few drinks at the weekend isn’t a problem, going overboard and eating and drinking too much can leave you with heartburn or indigestion. When you eat too much, your stomach has to produce more stomach acid to deal with it and if this excess acid is able to escape back up to oesophagus then you are suffering with heartburn. Indigestion, on the other hand, is felt in the stomach.
Take these tips to enjoy your weekend without overindulging.
Don’t Go Out Hungry
Whether you are going to your friends for a BBQ or your parents for Sunday lunch, if you want to limit over eating, never go out hungry. Eat something light, like a boiled egg for example, before you go so that hunger won’t take over when you finally sit down to eat, and you should be less likely to overindulge.
This one can be hard when there are so many tasty treats on offer, but try to stick to a single portion and add vegetables to your plate to bulk up a meal. Serve your food on a smaller plate to make it seem like there is a larger portion of food.
Don’t Eat Mindlessly
When eating, it is important to limit distractions so you can fully concentrate on what and how much you are putting in your mouth. If you are at a party or buffet style event, you could try eating with the opposite hand you are used to, that way you will be more aware each time you go to grab some more food.
When you’re back at home and it comes to snacking, it’s important to take one portion for yourself and put the rest away. If you sit down in front of the TV with a family sized bag of crisps, mindless eating can take over and you may just keep eating until they are all finished.
You may be busy socialising but remember to drink lots of water. Firstly, if you are drinking alcohol over the weekend, this can leave you dehydrated so it is important to rehydrate your body and flush out any toxins. Also, it is possible for your brain to interpret how you are feeling as hunger when actually you are just thirsty.
Another great tip is to drink a glass of water half an hour before a meal to help fill your stomach meaning, again, you will be less hungry when the food arrives.
Adding ice to your cold drinks is a good way to trick your mind into thinking you are drinking more than you actually are, meaning that you should in fact, drink less.
Also, did you know that the shape of the glass can have a big influence on how much or how little you think you’ve had to drink? Have your drink served in a tall thin glass rather than a short wide one as this tricks your brain into thinking there is more in the glass.
Try to put these tips into practice over this weekend and you should be feeling fresh and ready to take on the week when Monday comes back around! If you feel overindulging is what causes your heartburn or indigestion and it does strike, take Gaviscon Double Action as it gets to work in 3min and lasts up to 4 hours meaning you’ll be free to enjoy the rest of your evening. Suitable from 12 years old. Always read the label.
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 Strugala V., Dettmar P.W., Sarratt K., Skykes J. and Berry J. 2010. A randomized, controlled, cross over trial to investigate times to onset of the perception of soothing and cooling by over-the-counter heartburn treatments. The journal of International Medical Research. 38: 449.F457.