How do I avoid indigestion and over-eating over Christmas?

I tend to overeat during the festive season and suffer bad indigestion as a result.

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What can I do to help prevent this?

Indigestion can be avoided by making some simple changes.

Try to eat smaller, regular meals rather than going for long periods of time without eating before consuming a big dinner - although constantly eating snacks all day can be as bad.

Take your time to eat food and chew each mouthful slowly as this helps to start the body's digestive process. Avoid eating too much food that is rich, spicy or fatty and watch the amount of caffeine and alcohol you consume, as family and friends just dropping in can make you lose track of what you are eating and drinking over the day.

If you smoke, the chemicals that you inhale in cigarette smoke may be contributing to your indigestion.

These chemicals can cause the ring of muscle that separates your oesophagus (gullet) from your stomach to relax, which allows stomach acid to leak back up into your gullet more easily.

I am worried about putting on weight over Christmas. How can I avoid piling on the pounds?

If you enjoy a roast turkey dinner, you don't have to watch everyone else tuck in while you eat a lettuce leaf - making some sensible changes to your roast is enough.

Turkey is one of the healthiest meat options, just avoid the skin.

Fill your plate with vegetables, and ditch the Yorkshire puddings for a wholemeal roll. Have mashed rather then roasted potatoes and avoid butter.

At a buffet table, avoid high-fat foods such as salted peanuts, cheese, mayonnaise, and cakes including mince pies. Instead aim for the low-fat options such as rice crackers, sandwiches without mayonnaise, and salsa dip.

Eat healthily at home before going to the party so you are not hungry and tempted to overeat when you get there.

Alcohol is packed with calories so don't be tempted to substitute your favourite snacks for a few drinks - you can still put on weight and have a nasty hangover.

WHAT IS... A CYSTOSCOPY?

A cystoscopy is used to examine the inside of the bladder. It is performed using a cystoscope and can be used to:

n check for abnormalities, such a kidney stone, or a blockage;

n remove a sample of bladder tissue for testing in cases of suspected cancer;

n treat certain bladder conditions, such as removing small bladder stones.

A cystoscopy may be needed if symptoms suggest there is something wrong with your bladder such as incontinence, pelvic pain or problems urinating. If you have a local anaesthetic, you can go home when the cystoscopy has been completed. If you have a spinal, or a general, anaesthetic, it will usually take up to four hours to recover.

Food and drink

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