After months of planning right to the last detail, there’s no reason why diet should ruin your big day. You’ve likely spent months preparing to look and feel your best, scheduling in everything from a new workout to a meal plan made to get you glowing. You wake up on your wedding day with a boosted immune system and free of sore throat and sniffles, but all that prep could be wasted without a plan in place for how to eat on the day.
It makes just as much sense to think about what you should consume on the big day itself, yet for many, wedding day nutrition frequently gets looked over. A seemingly never-ending to-do list means that brides often just forget to eat, but nerves and fear of bloating can play a part as well. A glass too much of bubbly is almost inevitable as guests celebrate your new status, but will hit harder on an empty stomach. An on-the-day eating plan sets you up right, whatever the last-minute hiccups.
Eggs, Over Easy
Good nutrition keeps energy running on an even keel, so that fainting or light-headedness are not an issue and emotions are kept in check (give or take a few tears at “I do” of course). Brides should aim to set themselves up with a breakfast that sustains them throughout the day. Opt for a winning blend of good fats and protein to balance blood sugar levels. Eggs and avocado are a natural choice, and will keep brides fuller for longer without any bloating. Keep in mind that coffee is great for a get-going kick first thing, but more than one cup will just feed nervous energy. For brides on the move, easy, packable foods should be your go-to. Nealy Fischer’s Frittata Muffins are a great make-ahead option that can be eaten hot or cold and provide a high-protein, low-carb mix.
But what if wedding day nerves make the thought of actually eating seem impossible? A nourishing smoothie can contain everything a bride needs nutritionally in one easy-to-digest drink. Look for combinations that provide both protein and hydration in one glass. “Base the smoothie on coconut water, add in a banana, some almond butter or plant based protein powder, a cucumber and some greens and blend everything together,” says Karin Reiter, a functional medicine nutritionist and founder of Nutritious and Delicious.
Moving on from breakfast, brides do well to focus on hydration for the rest of the day. Skin will glow, and alcohol’s effects are lessened when the body is hydrated well. Water is the obvious option, and a great choice with a slice of lemon, but coconut water is extra nourishing and smooth on digestion, while watermelon juice offers optimal hydration and can be used to get a blocked system moving – helpful before a bride slips into her dress. Fruits make for great snacks, and Ray Williams, a personal trainer and nutritionist that works on bridal eating plans, recommends chopped strawberries with a gut-soothing Greek yoghurt. Stay away from raw nuts that can cause bloating, and caffeinated teas and coffee, which causes water retention.
At lunch and dinner choose meals that are known to be easy to digest. Nourishing non-dairy soups followed by steamed chicken or fish work well. Reducing sugar and salt intake also helps keep bloating at bay, so stay away from menus that include foods heavy in soy sauce, advises Reiter. Alternate alcohol intake with water for a clearer head and sip at the champagne, or if you want a low-sugar option for toasting, try replacing the usual suspects with a vodka or quality tequila and soda.
Brides that start their day with a wholesome breakfast, followed by well-chosen snacks and plenty of hydrating drinks capitalise on the work they put in to look and feel good ahead of the wedding. They don’t only glide through the day feeling great, they also set the stage for a night to (actually) remember.