Wednesday, September 5, 2012

How To Party Proof Your Gut For Christmas

With shopping malls and supermarkets gradually bringing in more and more Christmas gifts, decorations and food, Christmas will be here before you know it. Your workplace and friends will be asking you to Christmas parties and gatherings across the upcoming weeks. If you're at University, there's a party every other night. No sooner do you recover from one and you're into another. No wonder your guts are tied up in knots. If you're a bit older and already struggling to manage a home, job, and three children, Christmas can make it a nightmare. The kids are already winding themselves up, your mum and dad have given notice they want to stay again, there's presents to buy, food to prepare and your partner needs more of your time as well. It doesn't stop after you're retired, your children feel it's their duty to visit and you've got to feed them and the grandchildren are so tiring. Christmas! Bah! Humbug! It's bad enough if you're perfectly well, but with IBS, it's just Strictly Come Dancing. You're bowels are doing their own version of the Rumba all the time! So what can you do? How can you party proof your gut and enjoy the festivities?

Well, the answer is to pace yourself. You don't have to stuff yourself silly, and drink yourself paralytic to have a good time. Quite the opposite. You will have a much better time if you keep within your limits. Top tips are:

    Enjoy your food, eat slowly, savour it. Don't eat too much, just have one helping of meat and not too many mince pies and please watch the sprouts. Eat until you are satisfied.

    Enjoy a glass or two of wine, but have plenty of water too. Drink enough, but slowly. Then relax, enjoy the company, stay in control. What you should aim to achieve is that mellow comfortable feeling, rather than reckless.

    Enjoyment is all about regulation. Try to keep to the routine your gut is used to. Try not to eat too late.

    Go to bed at a reasonable time. Try to wind down before you sleep, and don't wear yourself out. Some people may think of you as a party pooper, but that's their problem. The people that really matter will probably know you have a bit of a dodgy gut but will respect you for making the effort and envy you for keeping it together.

You may be the one that's doing most of the work, if so plan ahead, allocate times to get presents, work out what you are going to buy well in advance, organise shopping, prepare as much food as you can beforehand, so that you can relax when your guests come. Then if you know that your mum always winds you up, plan for that too, just think about how you can organise the time so you are both diverted by other activities, involve her, bring out the best in her. She will feel good and you will too. Get your partner, your family involved with the cooking. Switch off the television and talk, play games and basically enjoy each other's company. It's what bonds families together. You may, in some circumstances, not see each

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