Is there a better antidote to the chaos of Christmas than a sip (or two) of the family tipple?
Some choose beer or G&T decorated with fruits, whilst others strictly choose champagne or wine served in a chilled glass. There are classic mulled wine enthusiasts, adventurous egg nog and cocktail mixers, or the families that have all the above or none at all.
Teeth whitening brand, White Glo recently brought us the news that some drinks are bad news for our teeth (here’s looking at you dark rum and sugar-laden coke.) While others are better, such as low acidity G&T or Spanish sparkling wine, Cava, which has a PH level between three and four and is therefore low in acidity too. Oh, and if you’re looking for a kiss under the mistletoe – it’s advised you miss-out the vodka. Vodka will dry out the mouth and make your breath smell. Nice.
With all this information revealed, online personal trainers Nuyoo.co wanted to investigate British boozy Christmas habits by conducting a survey concerning 2,012 respondents of various ages.
- Champagne (32%) voted the UK’s favourite Christmas tipple, with liquors coming second (18%) and whiskey and wine coming in joint third (14%.)
- 41% of Brits will start drinking ‘mid-morning’, 23% at lunch and 14% before 9am!
- Mum and Dad named “family member most likely to get drunk” at Christmas, amassing 46% of the vote, followed next by Uncle (14%), Auntie (5%) and Nan (5%.)
- 32% claim liquors make them feel the guiltiest, followed by whiskey (18%) and cocktails and punch (14%.)
- 77% say they aren’t influenced by fitness fads at Christmas time, but 23% are.
- 82% of Brits use the excuse: “I’ll just have one more, it is Christmas after all.”
To help those affected by tipple-guilt this festive season, Nuyoo has devised the list ‘12 sips of Christmas’ a complimentary list of 12 holiday cocktails that are just that little bit healthier, lighter and easier on the waistline!
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Healthy Spiced Egg Nog
Yes, you can indulge in a Christmas classic entirely guilt-free! Combine high-quality vodka, with ground cinnamon and three ounces of low-fat egg nog, for all the flavour and creaminess in under 200 calories!
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Apple Cider Sangria
White wine, apple cider and vodka shimmer over seasonal fruits in this cocktail littered with cinnamon sticks, segments of orange, apple slices, pomegranate and a dash of honey. All the fresh fruit and none of the artificial syrup!
The Ginger Snap
This vodka-based fruit and ginger fusion is made from natural ingredients, such as ginger, sage and fresh lemon juice, all of which will cleanse your palette and leave you feeling light and refreshed.
A combination of deep red hues perfect for the festive season, this champagne and fresh pomegranate cocktail is a real treat! For a healthy twist, replace sugar with Stevia and stir well.
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Winter Sea Breeze
The sea breeze gets a cold weather makeover, in a mix of vodka, soda water, grapefruit juice and a splash of tonic syrup. Scatter with pomegranate seeds and mint leaves to take it up a notch.
Rosemary Gin Fizz
A delicate blend of fresh and light ingredients, this cocktail is simple yet tasty! Mix together gin, soda, honey and a splash of lemon juice, before decorating with sprigs of festive rosemary.
Gingered Cider Hot Toddy
Warm cider infused with tea (go decaf if it’s close to bedtime) and a shot of rum or bourbon. Ginger and honey can help you to recover from a cold, and alcohol can aid a restless sleep, so try it out if you’re suffering from winter’s chill.
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Red Wine Hot Chocolate
The humble hot chocolate is made-over for the festive season, in this decadent treat with a healthy twist. Make with skim milk, one cup of red wine and a few dark chocolate chunks. Yes, chocolate should be consumed in moderation but the higher the cocoa content the better for your health!
Pear and Sage Sparklers
Fancy a cocktail that tastes like your Christmas wreath smells? This diced pear and fresh sage treat can be enjoyed as a mock-tail, but for a boozy lift simply add a splash of bourbon. It’s as easy as that!
St. Germain and Champagne
Perhaps the easiest cocktail to make, combine half St. Germain with half brut Champagne, dry sparkling wine, or brut Rose and serve in a chilled fluted glass for added style. To garnish, add antioxidant-filled pomegranate seeds and a juicy strawberry or two.
Want to feel like you’re getting away from the chaos of Christmas? Why not try this exotic tipple, which combines Pisco, a famous liquor in Peru, with cranberries! The fresh cranberries not only give an added health boost but together with segments of rich green lime, this will look like the ultimate yuletide treat!
Keep your calorie count down by making your cocktail recipe simple – a short ingredient list is the trick. For a seasonally spiced beverage sure to keep you cosy, mix together red wine, a little brandy and honey, sliced orange, cloves and a cinnamon stick or two! Perfect for the family to enjoy over Christmas lunch.
Image credit: Dream79/Chamille White
On a serious note, for all those who feel they will struggle to stay healthy over Christmas, Nuyoo.co spoke exclusively to Nutritionist, Jenna Hope who gave advice on how to stay balanced over the festive season in concern to drink, food and exercise.
- Know when to stop. Enjoy your mince pie or your glass of mulled wine, but don’t binge as this can leave you with large insulin spikes and contribute to festive weight gain.
- Factor in your workouts. There’s nothing to say you can’t maintain your workouts, just because it’s Christmas. Whether it’s a quick home hiit session before a party, a yoga class after work or even a morning walk around the block, make sure you stay active over the festive period.
- Pick your times. Of course, if you’re going to a Christmas party or you have a special festive dinner, enjoy yourself – but set your limits first. The problem arises when you tuck into festive coffees and mince pies to fix your 4pm slump on a work day.
- Choose wisely. Over Christmas we all enjoy a drink or two; (to stay healthy) opt for cocktails without sugar syrups and go for clear spirits with soda and lime instead. You’re still joining in, but you’re less likely to crave sugar the next day. Plus, the latter are much lower in calories.
- Eat regularly. It’s tempting to skip meals when you know you’ve got a big do later, but skipping meals can cause havoc to your blood glucose, which consequently leaves you over-eating and opting for the wrong foods later.
- Pile up the veggies. I recommend filling half your plate with veggies as they’re lower in energy and rich in fibre, which contributes to gut health, helps to maintain blood glucose stability and keeps you fuller for longer.