There’s no doubt that the holiday season is a notorious time for packing on extra pounds. But the truth is, you don’t have to choose between maintaining a healthy weight and participating in holiday festivities. And believe it or not, you don’t even have to deprive yourself of delicious goodies and holiday drinks as long as you follow these tips for how to avoid weight gain during the holiday season:
1. Eat a healthy meal before a Holiday party
Skipping party food entirely is kind of a bummer, and depriving yourself usually makes temptation stronger. If you fill up on a healthy meal before the party, you’ll be more likely to curb your impulse to gorge on all the goodies.
2. Don’t stand by the food
Snacking can be an unconscious activity, especially when a table full of scrumptious treats remains within arm’s reach. Concentrate on moving and mingling instead. You may be surprised by how well distance serves as a deterrent.
3. Be proudly picky at Parties
We always tell kids to not be so picky when it comes to food, but feel free to be as picky as possible at holiday parties. Instead of trying a little bit of everything, only indulge in your favorite foods. And if you try something new that looks amazing but doesn’t stack up in taste, you’re not obligated to finish it.
4. Hit up the fruit platter
Fruits containing potassium counterbalance your sodium consumption, which means you’ll retain less water and feel less bloated. So if your sweet tooth is calling, opt for some potassium-rich fruits like strawberries, kiwis, cantaloupe, bananas, and papaya.
5. Practice the three-bite rule for sweets
Sometimes temptation is too strong and fruit just isn’t going to cut it, especially when the dessert table looks like your personal utopia. So practice the three-bite rule to keep dessert consumption in check: one bite for an amazing first taste, a second bite to satisfy, and a third bite so the taste can linger on your tongue.
6. Fill up on protein
Protein helps you feel full, which can aid in controlling your appetite. So look for lean meats, seafood, chicken, turkey, and low-fat cheeses at the party food spread.
7. Eat slowly to avoid holiday weight gain
Did you know it takes your stomach about 20 minutes to register a “full” sensation and notify your brain accordingly? Eating slowly gives your body a chance to catch up, and reduces the likelihood of overeating.
8. ust say no to leftovers
At family gatherings in particular, you’re probably used to well-meaning relatives loading you up with leftovers. Avoiding temptation at a party is hard enough—avoiding calorie-rich leftovers in your own fridge is downright impossible, so take a pass on the Tupperware frenzy this year.
9. Go easy on the alcohol
Most boozy drinks contain empty calories with zero nutritional value, so avoid alcohol entirely or celebrate in moderation. Even something as simple as alternating drinks with water or seltzer with lime can make a difference, while also keeping you well hydrated.
10. Don’t save exercise for the New Year
It can be tempting to let your regular exercise routine slip with the promise of getting back on track after January 1, but if your weekends are packed with parties, it’s even more important to keep up your routine. Also, research has found that exercising in the morning results in more movement throughout the day and better food choices, so consider rearranging your exercise schedule to accommodate for party season.
11. Weigh yourself regularly to not gain weight
It’s easier to keep your weight in check when you hold yourself accountable on a regular basis. But don’t feel as if you need to weigh yourself every day. Twice a week is enough to maintain awareness without feeling guilty over every added ounce.
12. Don’t forget, it’s the holidays!
Don’t let your goal of avoiding weight gain distract you from the spirit of the season. If you have an off day, it’s important to remain positive. Remember, an extra sugar cookie or two can always be balanced by a few extra minutes on the treadmill the next day. Don’t let guilt ruin the good time you’re having with family and friends.
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The holidays can be a difficult time to manage your weight, especially when everyone around you is indulging with abandon. The good news is, you don’t have to face the struggle alone. Medarts Weight Loss can help. We offer fully customized weight management programs to help accomplish your weight loss goals. And sometimes, just having a cheerleader on your side can make the biggest difference. So call us today for more information on our services and programs. Or stop by our clinic in Downtown San Diego. We’re here for you. Call (619) 866-3333