Note: Paige Einstein, Certified Nutritionist co-wrote this article
I know that brides and grooms often arrive at the church, or the winery, or wherever they have decided to say their nups, in a state of malnutrition. I know this for a fact. One groom almost didn’t make it to his wedding, he was so malnourished. It happened like this. He was sick at the rehearsal. He wheezed and sneezed his way through our practice, bravely responding to our concerns with a glib, “It’s just a bad cold. I’ll be fine.” Alas, he felt bad enough that he didn’t eat anything at the rehearsal dinner following. But, he DID take some over-the-counter flu product and washed that down with a fair amount of the bubbly. So much bubbly, in fact, that when he returned to his hotel room he proceeded to throw up—for three hours straight. Concerned family members drove him to the hospital where he received IV infusions which returned him to a state of fluid equilibrium. He DID make it to his own wedding, but looking yellow and frail. He was a killjoy at the wedding reception, and the honeymoon had to be postponed.
Remembering that dramatic scenario, I recently asked a certified nutritionist, who just happens to be my daughter, “What should brides and grooms consume the day of AND the day before their wedding?” Well, it turns out that too much liquor at the rehearsal dinner is NOT a good thing. No, really? Below are her point by point suggestions on How to Survive the Big Day:
1. Go easy on the carbs. When you consume a meal high in carbohydrates (think pasta, bread, rice, cereal, potatoes and sugary foods), your body will store the extra carbs it doesn’t use for immediate energy. This causes your body to retain excess water, giving you a bloated feeling and look – definitely not want you want on your wedding day.
2. Focus on lean protein. Protein takes a long time to digest, meaning it will stick around in your stomach and leave you feeling full and satisfied for a long period of time. Good choices of low-fat protein include egg whites, chicken or turkey breast, fish, low-fat cottage cheese or Greek yogurt, and legumes.
3. Hydrate. Make sure you drink 6-8 glasses of water on the day of the wedding to prevent dehydration.
And, here are my daughter’s wedding day meal ideas:
Breakfast: Egg white omelet with mixed veggies and lowfat cheddar cheese, 2 pieces turkey bacon, 1 cup sliced strawberries
Lunch: Salad topped with grilled chicken breast, mixed vegetables, feta cheese, and balsamic vinaigrette dressing.
Snack: 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt mixed with 1 Tbsp chopped walnuts and 1/4 cup of berries
With that in your stomach, you are ready to Celebrate. It’s your big day after all! Eat if you can, drink moderately and definitely be merry!
p.s. Since you probably won’t be enjoying your reception MEAL, be it hors d’oeuvres or a five course meal, you might want to ask your caterer to prepare a basket of goodies you and your new spouse can take with you for a late night, early morning snack!