How To Keep Weight Off During The Holidays

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Maintaining weight over the holidays can be difficult with the multitude of seasonal parties to attend. But it not impossible to avoid gaining weight at Christmas. Here are some tips that can help everyone make it through to January with their waistline intact.

Maintain Healthy Eating Habits

It’s even more important to eat healthy during the holiday season than at other times of the year. The temptation of treats at every turn means that everyday meals should be healthy and satisfying. Good choices include whole grains, such as oatmeal or bran, at breakfast; veggie filled sandwiches or soups at lunch; and light dinners with lean protein such as chicken, beans or fish. By eating this way every day, anyone can afford to indulge once in a while.

Drink Lots of Water

Often people confuse hunger for thirst, so remember to drink six to eight glasses of water a day. Staying hydrated will keep everyone looking and feeling better, and may help prevent mindless eating.

Exercise Regularly

Working out not only improves mood but also revs up the metabolism so the body burns more calories every day. Whether it’s walking, yoga, or seasonal activities like skating and sledding, aim for exercise most days of the week. When possible, exercise outside during the day because exposure to natural light also improves mood as the days get darker in winter.

Limit “Holiday” Meals

Between office parties, family get-togethers and going out with friends, those two Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays can turn into weeks of too much food with too much fat, not to mention the too-many drinks to wash it down. To avoid this, pick a few favorite events to indulge at, and maintain healthy eating and drinking habits at the other ones.

Eat Only Your True Favorites

When it’s that event you’ve been anticipating for weeks, don’t just grab everything from the buffet table, or that one meal could contain hundreds of calories more than the body needs. Choose only foods you truly enjoy and only eat at this time of year. Shortbread cookies and phyllo pastry appetizers could be the top choices, but pass up the chips that are available all year long.

Fight the Mental Battle

Too often, when people eat too much at one meal, they figure their entire diet is blown and they might as well just keep eating and drinking whatever they want. In reality, one meal is not a diet-buster. Keep your perspective and if you overeat once, get right back on track.

It’s possible to avoid holiday weight gain and still enjoy the holiday season. These few simple tips can help anyone decide when to indulge in Christmas treats and when it’s time for healthier choices.