With all the treats at the social gatherings, watching both your budget and your diet during the festive season can be a challenge.

Whether we’re talking about savings goals, or weight goals, it’s easy to get a little carried away. It’s wonderful to treat your loved ones and enjoy yourself, and during a holiday it’s important to be kind to yourself and let loose a little. However, if you want to enjoy the season to its fullest, it’s helpful to have a positive mindfulness towards what you’re consuming.

An over-inflated tummy can be just as troubling as over-inflated expenses that need to be paid back in the months to come.

With the former… here are some tips you can use to help you keep to your health goals during the festive season!

Eat lots of fruit and vegetables

Whilst you don’t have to stick to every calorie (because that’s a serious buzzkill) use your current dietary goals as guidelines that you’re willing to be flexible with.

Fill out every meal and snack time with fruits and veggies. You can even bring your healthy meals to the social events you will be attending. Offering to bring your own dish of greens may be a good idea.

If you’re hosting, that means you have control of the menu. You can make healthier choices when shopping for the party, your guests may appreciate some healthy (and tastier) alternatives too. Healthy eaters are happy Peters!

Eat enough – check your meal portions

If that lavish roast on the table, with all that sauce, looks too good to avoid, don’t go wild on it. Have a glass of water before a big meal and you will be less likely to overeat. Don’t continue eating even when you feel full, you’ll regret it an hour later and enjoy the rest of your afternoon/evening far less.

If you have kids, or are celebrating with other people who have children, check how they feel about sweets and treats and don’t hand out chocolatey temptations without their consent.

If you go to restaurants with harvest tables, remember that the size of your portions equal the amount you will pay. So, being practical about your meal portions means being practical about your finances as well.

As the host, don’t over cater; avoid wasting food and don’t go over your food budget.

Keep to your exercise regime by changing it up a little…

Another key aspect to feeling happy and healthy is stimulating the flow of endorphins. It’s not always easy to keep up with a training schedule, or gym visits over the festive season, so why not consider mixing it up a little?

If you can’t run on the treadmill, ask your family to join you on a walk or trail. Spend some time on the trampoline with the kids, swim some lengths in the pool with a child on your back or play some pool games with your mates. Take the dogs for a run on the beach or explore a new trail that you’ve been dying to visit.

Remember, looking after your health doesn’t have to happen under the false-lighting of a near-empty Virgin Active.

Making mindful choices during the festive season is good for both your health and financial goals. Your holiday budget should align with your health goals, how much (and what) you eat will affect how much you spend.

You are in charge. You’re able to make healthy choices that will help you enjoy the festive season. Eat well and spend well!