The holidays are times of parties and family togetherness. That also means lots of food. But that doesn’t mean you have to gain weight. Yes, it’s true a study in 2000 found that 14% of those studied gained 5 pounds or more but that doesn’t mean that you do too. It is important to not make your goal weight loss during the holidays but a goal to prevent weight gain. Changing your mentality will help you change your focus and not add stress to your holiday festivities. Some tips to remember:
1) Always eat meals prior to a party. Don’t skip a meal. Skipping meals will actually make you hungry and eat
2) Snack healthy and make them count. Choose snacks that provide important nutrients and also make you full.
Snacks such as cheese sticks and whole wheat crackers or some trail mix are good options. The key
ingredients here are protein and fiber.
3) Keep exercise in your routine. It can be just a quick run around the block, walking your dog or going to the
gym. If traveling, stay at a hotel with a gym or ask to sample a local new gym.
4) Make sure you get enough sleep. Scientist have proven a link between sleep and the hormones that regulate
hunger and satiety. They found that people who slept fewer than eight hours a night had lower levels of
leptin, a hormone that tells your body it is full, and higher levels of ghrelin an appetite stimulator.
5) When you go to a party, offer to bring something. Doing this will ensure there is at least one healthy item
6) Avoid hanging out near the buffet table. Focus on people and conversation instead of eating.
7) Drink water in between alcohol. Its calorie freeJ
8) Watch portion sizes. Do not cover your plate with food. Remember less is more in this case. Eating double
portions can quickly pile on the calories and add inches to the waistline. A snack can range from 50 calories
for an apple to 100-150 calories for an ounce of trail mix or low fat yogurt.
9) Don’t tell yourself you can’t have something because then you will want it more and most likely eat more than
one portion. So enjoy a small piece of your favorite holiday treat!
10) Track your food intake to encourage you to be more aware of how many calories you are eating. Add apps like
MyFitnessPal to your phone or look up websites that can help you track your calories.
Most of all enjoy the holidays and remember that you can have fun and enjoy food at the same time. Savor the food you do eat while being mindful of your choices.
These blog entries are written by our very own clinicians. When inspiration hits, another entry will be logged.
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