It was the week before Easter…….surviving Easter.

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Hands up if you have already indulged in some Easter treats. Chances are that you have had a couple of mini Easter eggs (or packets) or enjoyed a few Hot X Buns already, especially since they have been available since the week after Christmas! Now there is nothing wrong with enjoying celebratory foods, in fact, indulging occasionally in festive treats is a part of normal, healthy eating. The issue is when Easter or any holiday period becomes an excuse for mindless overeating which inevitably leads to weight gain over time. So, if you want to enjoy Easter without a few extra unnecessary kilos to match, here are the simple steps to take in surviving Easter!

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1. No more hot cross buns until Good Friday – I mean it! They are 300cal (a small meal) each along with 50-60g total carbs and that is without the butter we generally enjoy them with. To reduce your carb and calorie intake, look for the smaller buns and avoid extras such as choc chips which is really just adding more fat and calories to this traditional favourite. If you wanted to be particularly strict you could always enjoy ½ of the bun or pull out some of the soft middle to reduce the carb load.

2. One special egg on Easter Sunday – whatever your favourite egg is, buy it and enjoy it on Easter Sunday. This does not mean you need the 500g extra-large bunny or egg, especially if you keep in mind that a relatively small 200g bunny contains almost 1000 calories, or almost all the calories you need for an entire day. In general one large bunny or egg is  a better choice than small individual eggs as we end up eating more of the smaller eggs anyway as we do not psychologically register how many we are actually consuming. A small packet of individual eggs with still set you back almost 800calories without you even noticing you are eating them.

3. Give away the extras – take them to work, re-gift them, and just get it out of the house. Whether it is Sunday lunch leftovers, Easter cake, show bag contents or the kids Easter eggs, if they are in the house, you will eat them. One other trick is to purchase the kids treats that you do not actually like, then you will be far less tempting to take and eat them late at night when the munchies hit.

4. More exercise – plenty of public holidays means plenty of time to move more. Holidays are never a time to do less physically, rather they represent an opportunity to do more as we have more time. Make a concerted effort this Easter to be physically active each holiday day with at least a basic walk added into your schedule.

5. One food show bag – for both kids and adults to avoid gross over consumption. If you are planning a trip to the Easter Show, make sure you take some of your food as the options readily available for reasonable prices tend to be poor quality, high fat fast foods. Once you get to the show bag hall, show some restraint. Again if you buy it for yourself or the kids, you will eat it eventually so the easiest way to control calorie intake is to limit the number of food show bags that you purchase.