The holiday season is a time to celebrate with family and friends. Unfortunately, for many it also becomes a time for over-eating and weight gain. Holiday eating from Thanksgiving to New Years can result in an extra 3 pounds every year. Over a lifetime, holiday weight gain can really add up. The holidays don’t have to mean weight gain. Focus on a healthy balance of food, activity, and fun.
By implementing a few simple tips you can stay healthy through the holiday season.
You will sabotage your best intentions by thinking you can figure out what you will eat as you go along or make on the spot choices. Deciding you want a more healthy diet to make sure you don’t gain any additional weight means you have to start cooking more. The best way to do this is to plan your weekly menu in advance. This is very challenging without some organization.
- Write out your menus and post them so they are visible. Food shopping becomes more focused and saves you money.
- Get others involved, family, friends, roommates and kids – take some of the planning pressure off yourself.
- Your freezer is your friend. Homemade Soups and Stews freeze great and are perfect for late nights at work or lunches.
- Eat meals sitting down at a table. This helps prevent you from extra mindlessly food consumption and calories and keeps you attentive to what you are eating. It also marks the beginning and end of a meal. This can have a big impact, because appetites are often dictated by what’s going on in your immediate environment. If you allow yourself to eat meals while lounging on your couch or at your desk, you made find yourself constantly snacking.
The more you train your cooking muscle the easier this task becomes!
The Many Holiday Dinners and Parties
- Be Realistic. Don’t try to lose weight over the holidays, instead maintain your weight.
- Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve stress around family and commitments and helps to prevent weight gain.
- Survey the food before filling your plate. Choose your favorites and include vegetables and fruits.
- Eat until you are Satisfied not Stuffed and Uncomfortable. There are more holiday events to enjoy!
- Be mindful of your alcohol intake. Alcohol lowers your inhibitions and causes many people to over eat and indulge.
- If you over-eat at one meal, go light on the next meal. It takes approx. 500 calories per day above your normal consumption to gain a pound. So enjoy a treat.
- If you are asked to bring a dish to a holiday gathering, make it something healthy that you enjoy.
- Position yourself away from the high fat – high calorie appetizers such as chips and dips.
- Eat what is satiating. You do not have to finish everything on your plate.
- Christmas dinner is an event. Cupcakes, cookies and candy at the office are not events.
Make good choices in the long run, your mind and body will say thanks!