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31 December 2012

Healthy ways to celebrate New Year’s Eve

If you always spend New Year’s Day nursing a hangover while telling yourself “never again!”, it is time to put those words into action and start the new year as you mean to go on.

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New Year celebrations with added health benefits

If you always spend New Year’s Day nursing a hangover while telling yourself “never again!”, it is time to put those words into action and start the new year as you mean to go on. Despite what many may think, it is possible to enjoy ringing in the New Year and feel healthier the next day. Here are some alternative ways to celebrate the New Year while boosting your health and fitness.

Host a pampering party

To help get your healthy intentions off to a great start, try hosting a party with a difference. Rather than the usual drinks and a buffet, get all your close friends round for a spot of pampering. Hire a mobile beauty or massage therapist to provide treatments for you and your guests, or stock up on face masks and manicure kits for a bit of DIY pampering. For refreshments, provide healthy snacks such as vegetable crudités and dips, and serve your guests healthy smoothies and cocktails.

Watch the sunrise

If you don’t fancy starting the New Year cooped up indoors, grab a friend, family member or your partner and head out for an early morning walk to watch the sunrise. Not only will you get some early morning exercise, but starting a New Year watching the sun rise with someone special is much more inspiring and conducive for a healthy new beginning than waking up midday with a hangover!

Make some healthy cocktails

If you can’t resist seeing the New Year in with a drink in hand, you can still do it in the healthiest way possible by drinking in moderation and making your own healthy cocktails using fresh fruits and juices. Not only will making your own fruit cocktails ensure you are at least getting some nutrients and antioxidants with your alcohol, but the process of making your cocktails (rather than simply ordering at the bar) will help to slow down your drinking.

Go dancing

Most of us love a dance, and the good news is that celebrating the New Year with a boogie on the dance floor could help you burn off hundreds of calories. While hitting the dance floor in a club or bar is as good an option as any, if nights on the town aren’t your thing there are plenty of good alternatives. If you fancy a relaxed night in, you could get your friends round for a dance session on the Wii. Or, for something a little more formal, book tickets for a New Year’s Eve ball. Alternatively, get in on one of the year’s hottest trends by hosting or attending a New Year Zumba party.

Play some family board games

Research findings published in the journal Plos Medicine have indicated that having strong ties to family and friends can help you live longer, so why not boost your health this New Year’s Eve with a bit of family bonding? OK, board games may be a little bit cheesy, but they can also be a whole lot of fun and a great way to get the whole family involved. Try not to get too competitive though – we want everyone still on speaking terms once the clock strikes midnight!

Go for a midnight run

For all you keen runners out there, why not start the New Year indulging your passion and getting those healthy resolutions off to a flying start? For anyone celebrating in New York you could join in the annual midnight run through Central Park, or there are similar organised events in various worldwide locations. Alternatively, you could organise your own run at midnight with some friends or running club members.

Movies and popcorn

Do all these ideas sound too much like hard work? Well, the good news is you can boost your health right from the comfort of your couch. While watching television might not be quite as good for you as hitting the streets for a run, there are still health benefits to be had. Watching a comedy show or movie has been found to be beneficial for your heart, immune system and mental wellbeing, while snacking on popcorn will give your body a boost of antioxidants, nutrients and fibre.

   (Realbuz.com, December 2012)

(Picture: Couple dancing from Shutterstock)

More on Realbuzz: 

10 healthy ways to help you ease into the new year  

10 unusual New Year’s resolutions  

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