How to Bounce Back When You've Eaten Too Much

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Eaten too much? Get the scoop on the healthy way to recover from overeating.

Eaten too much? It happens to the best of us. Youstart theweekend with the best intentions to stick to your diet, instead you've eaten too much.Then Friday nighthappens.Drinksand canapésspan several hours followedonSaturdaynight with a dinner party where - oops, you definitely didn't mean to have seconds for dessert.All of a sudden it's Sunday and it'd be a shame to miss that Sunday roast, followed by crisps and a film on the sofa. And here you are on Monday trying to figure out how to get back on track.

But take heart, eating too much isn't enough to derail your diet. The key to staying on track after a heavy weekend of overeating is not to beat yourself up over it and simply move forward. Your daily habits have more of an impact than a day or two off your diet.

For the best strategy to bounce back after eating too much over the weekend, we asked nutritionist and food psychotherapist Mary Strugar (opens in new tab) for her top tips...

First of all - don't feel guilty about overeating! "I always think guilt is overrated," says Mary. "If we make an eating plan that we don't think we can stick to, we probably just build resistance that may lead to a bad relationship with food over time. We all have experience of someone telling us to do something and our internal answer is 'no, I am not doing that'. However, if you make a plan for the next five days that you think is manageable and gently request to yourself that you do it you may find it easier," she says.

Keep reading for more of Mary's top tips for recovering after a food heavy weekend, plus the seven-day eating plan that will help you get back on track.

Find more health and diet tips.

Eaten Too Much: Get moving

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Eaten Too Much: Get moving

If you're still feeling like you're in a bit of a food coma, some light exercise could banish your lethargy, ease your digestion and even out your blood sugar. Go for an extra-long stroll in the park with your dog or try some of these beginner yoga poses.

Eaten Too Much: Load up on H2O

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Eaten Too Much: Load up on H2O

It may seem counterintuitive to drink water when your tum feels bloated, but it will actually help relieve the sodium and carb bloat. Try sipping fizzy water or peppermint tea to ease your indigestion.

Eaten Too Much: Envision an end-of-week treat

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Eaten Too Much: Envision an end-of-week treat

Motivate yourself to stick to the plan by rewarding yourself with healthy treat at the end of the week. It could be that new party dress you've been eyeing, a mini-spa day or a date with your best friend to catch the latest Benedict Cumberbatch film. He's a tastier reward than any of those puddings you'll pass on this week.

Eaten Too Much: The simplest plan

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Eaten Too Much: The simplest plan

If you don't want something overly complicated, just stick to a basic guideline. "Some people just want a very simple plan -- no snacks, no sweets, no alcohol and eating moderately with a structured 3 meals a day," says Mary. (See the end of the gallery for Mary's 7-day meal plan.) But if you really overdid it at the buffet this weekend and want to detox your system a bit, read on for Mary's extra-light meal plan.

Eaten Too Much: If you really overdid it...

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Eaten Too Much: If you really overdid it...

"If you really do feel you have overindulged and would like a really light week I would suggest this plan for Monday, Wednesday, Friday," says Mary. Breakfast: "Make a smoothie for breakfast with broccoli, beetroot, cherry tomato, blackberries and blueberries with mixed powdered golden linseeds. Liquid makes you feel full and this blast of antioxidants will give you a real boost. (I suggest using the NutriBullet blender if you have one.)" Lunch: "Try 4 oz of poached salmon (or another first-class protein) with some mixed salad sprinkling a handful of seeds on top." 
 Supper: "For supper, a delicious a warming, miso soup should suffice." 

"This plan only adds up to about 700 calories so on Tuesday and Thursday, you may want to eat a bit more," says Mary. "Have a healthy breakfast perhaps of muesli, berries and yogurt with some seeds, having a balanced lunch and dinner with some first class protein, some salad or vegetables with a small portion of complex carbohydrate perhaps some brown rice or sweet potato."

Eaten Too Much: Remember your triggers for next weekend

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Eaten Too Much: Remember your triggers for next weekend

Have a clear plan in place for next weekend so you don't fall into the same old diet traps. "Look back at the triggers and perhaps background causes of why you may have over eaten so much at the weekend and try to cut tempation in half," says Mary. So if you know you're hitting happy hour with friends on Friday, avoid ordering something greasy from the bar by snacking on almonds before you get there. And if you're going to a Christmas party on Saturday where you know the mince pies will be calling your name, make a plan to chow down on crudités before you hit the dessert table. Read on for Mary's 7-day meal plan...

Day 1

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Day 1

Breakfast: Gluten-free oat porridge 50g cooked, berries, apple or pear, 1 tablespoon yogurt,1 desert spoon of golden linseeds, teaspoon of honey to taste Lunch: Fresh tuna salad with 60g brown basmati rice Dinner: Steam-stir fried vegetables with tofu with 60g brown basmati rice Snacks: Pear with handful of pumpkin seeds Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice (1/3 juice, 2/3 water)

Day 2

Day 2

Breakfast: Smoothie with melon, peaches and blueberries, rice milk, ground golden linseeds. 1 slice of rice bread Lunch: Soup made with vegetables, onions, garlic, quinoa, Swiss boullion powder stock Dinner: Turkey, steamed vegetables, 60g brown basmati rice Snacks: Apple with handful of sunflower seeds Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water

Day 3

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Day 3

Breakfast: Gluten-free Oat porridge 50g cooked, berries, apple or pear, 1 tablespoon yogurt, 1 dessert spoon of golden linseeds Lunch: Soup made of beans and brown rice, onions garlic and vegetables, 2 oat cakes Dinner: Tuna steak with black-eyed beans and rocket and watercress salad with 60 gms brown basmati rice Snacks: 1⁄2 cup of cherries with 3 almonds Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water

Day 4

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Day 4

Breakfast: Gluten-free aat porridge 50g cooked, berries, apple or pear, 1 tablespoon yogurt, 1 dessert spoon of golden linseeds Lunch: Quinoa tabbouleh, quinoa, herbs, spring onions, cucumber with rainbow salad, olive oil, lemon juice and cayenne pepper dressing with 2 rice cakes using olive spread Dinner: Roasted cod with lemon and garlic, steamed vegetables, sweet potato Snacks: Half cup berries (not strawberries) with handful sunflower seeds Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water

Day 5

Day 5

Breakfast: Smoothie with mango, melon and raspberries, rice milk, ground golden linseeds. 1 slice rye sough dough bread Lunch: Chestnut and butter bean soup, small green salad Dinner: Trout with puy lentils and large salad with 60 gms brown rice Snacks: Raw carrot, celery and pepper crudités dipped in sardine or mackerel pate Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water

Day 6

Day 6

Breakfast: Warm stewed apples mixed with gluten-free oats, yogurt swirl, 1 desert spoon of golden linseeds, vegetable juice Lunch: Quinoa (boil seeds for 15 mins) with roasted vegetables (carrot, pepper, onion, whole garlic cloves, sweet potato, parsnip) Dinner: Roasted vegetables with Lamb (sweet potato, carrots, onion, garlic cloves and herbs) with chickpea and green salads Snacks: Grapes with goats cheese on rice cakes Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water

Day 7

Day 7

Breakfast: 2 slices of lean bacon, hash brown sweet potato with onion, garlic and rosemary with vegetable juice ? carrot, celery, apple and ginger Lunch: Vegetable and butter bean stew made with Swiss Boullion powder stock with wild black rice 100g, herb salad Dinner: Duck and vegetable steam/stir-fry with sesame seeds and green beans (onion and garlic), 70g brown basmati rice, Rocket and walnut salad Snacks: Smoked mackerel pate on rice cakes, l-glutamine powder Drinks: Unlimited water, herbal teas plus one glass of diluted juice 1/3 juice, 2/3 water