Holiday Detox: 5 Tips for Recovering from a Holiday Binge

An expert shares easy tips for getting back on track

It happens to the best of us; despite every good health- and fitness-minded intention, you accidentally went overboard in the food department—at a holiday party, while visiting family for the weekend or even over the course of a few weeks at work where festive treats were popping up left and right.

Plus, on top of overeating (whether for one day or over a period of time) maybe you’ve been drinking a few more cocktails than usual and missing out on some quality shuteye thanks to a busier schedule.

As a result, you might be feeling tired, out of shape and just generally in a funk.

In order to get back on track, first it’s important to remember two things: a single day of over-indulgence won’t wreck total havoc on your health and fitness goals, but also, no matter how long it’s been since you’ve “fallen off the horse”, there are always simple steps you can take to get back in the saddle.

Dr. Scott Weiss, exercise physiologist, board certified athletic trainer and co-founder of Bodhizone in New York City offers the following five tips that will help get your body back on track quickly.

1. Folate
“Folate is a vitamin that you will want to replenish after drinking alcohol,” says Weiss. “As alcohol moderately depletes our body's store of it.” According to Weiss, folate provides many benefits, like aiding in the production of new cells and preventing damaging changes to DNA that could lead to cancer.

2. Yoga
When it comes to yoga, Weiss says that after a binge you don’t even need to wait until the next day in order to start your detox. “Do some yoga poses (like Apanasana, the spinal twist or the bridge pose) for digestion after you wake up from your food coma or the next morning to keep everything running smoothly,” says Weiss. “Even better, go for a run the morning after.”

3. Stock Up on Detox Foods
Weiss says, “Fridge space may be lacking, but make some room for foods like dark leafy greens, beets, and whole grains to help aid in detoxing.”

4. Exercise on Your Days Off
Hopefully the holiday season lends you a few extra days off. If you’re lucky enough to enjoy some additional vacation time during the season, Weiss suggests that you make a point of working out on these days, since hopefully you’ll have extra time. “Make it a point to do both cardio and strength training,” he said. “This will not only help burn the extra calories you ate but make you feel a whole lot better mentally. Total body weight exercises are great, as is simple walking or light jogging when you are unmotivated to get to the gym."

5. Hydrate.
“After a huge meal the body is in desperate need of water to aid in digestion,” says Weiss. He suggests making sure to drink at least two to three liters of water per day. “This will not only help digestion, but also aid in detoxing the body,” he said.