Tips to Avoid Gaining Weight over the Holidays

Are you concerned about weight gain over the holidays?  It’s certainly easy enough given all of the food and drink we are exposed to for weeks during the Christmas holidays.  Since we are probably going to indulge in some extra treats, here are some tips and strategies that you can consider in an effort to not gain any weight.

  1. Protein, protein, protein! Protein such as turkey and other lean meats will keep you full for a long time.  You don’t have to be hungry to eat but feeling full is the only time you don’t think about munching.
  2. Eat slowly. The quicker we eat, the less time the body has to register that it is full so slow down.  Take time to enjoy your food and savor each bite.
  3. Choose high fiber foods like beans, legumes and loads of raw vegetables. These foods not only fill you up but fiber will inhibit the fat from being absorbed from you foods.
  4. Eat plenty of healthy fats. Everyone likes fat but be sure to stick to the good fats like avocados (guacamole here we come!), nuts and homemade dressings for your vegetable dips.   Fats create satiety and fullness.  Don’t be afraid to bring your homemade veggie dips with you to parties.
  5. Use smaller plates. Plate sizes have increased significantly over the years. The brain associates empty space on your plate as not enough food.  Also using smaller plates means less food eaten.
  6. Stick to natural sugars and ditch the simple sugars like holiday cookies, cakes and pies. These treats are definitely tempting but offer nothing but weight gain. Stick to fruits with a no sugar added yogurt dip.
  7. Take time before grabbing seconds or thirds off the buffet table. It takes 20 minutes for your body to register that it is full so wait at least 20 minutes before reaching for more food.
  8. Stay away from very high carb foods like bread, potatoes and pasta. These foods break down quickly into glucose and too much glucose is a recipe for weight gain.
  9. Watch the alcohol. Many drinks like beer, eggnog and fruity drinks carry a bunch of unnecessary carbs and sugar.  Stick to drinks mixed with water or club soda using lemon or lime instead of sugar.  Spice your drinks with cinnamon or other flavors.  Too much alcohol can weaken your resistance to overindulging in food as well.
  10. Drink plenty of water. Water fills your belly so drink plenty of water before you go to the party and while you are at the party to ensure you eat less.
  11. Keep up with your exercise regime. We all know how busy we can be during the holidays and it is a little harder to get to the gym so try doing some exercises from home.  Do some squats while chopping at the kitchen counter or go for a long walk to de-stress.
  12. Get plenty of sleep. Sleep deprivation is quite common during the holidays and it may cause weight gain.  Those who don’t sleep enough tend to be hungrier, consume more calories and get less physical activity.
  13. Bring a healthy dish to share. This way you know you’re safe eating what you brought without looking like you’re being picky.
  14. When baking use the following substitutes to cut calories and fat:
  • Replace butter with applesauce, mashed banana or pumpkin puree
  • Instead of sugar, use a low-calorie substitute such as stevia or xylitol
  • Add dried fruit instead of chocolate chips or candies
  • Flavor recipes with extracts like vanilla, almond or peppermint oils instead of butter or sugar
  1. To reduce fat in cooking use plenty of herbs and spices instead of butter; bake, steam or grill instead of frying; use low-fat milk instead of heavy cream; replace cream cheese, sour cream and mayo with Greek yogurt

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s