The holidays are a special time of year filled with family, friends, traditions and many celebrations. Food is an integral part of this season and there are many opportunities between Halloween and New Year’s Day to indulge. As many of us know all too well, all this eating and celebrating can come with unwanted weight gain and derailed health goals.
Luckily, there are ways to enjoy this exciting time of year without feeling restricted. Try incorporating our top five tips to maintain, not gain, this holiday season. Are there any tips that you have used in the past that have worked? Let us know in the comments.
Top 5 tips for avoiding weight gain during the holidays.
1. Stay hydrated. Drink lots of water throughout the day and while celebrating the holidays. Try to follow each alcoholic drink with one glass of water.
2. Sneak in veggies. The crudités platter is your biggest ally at a party. By all means enjoy the delicious appetizers passed around, but also load your appetizer plate with crunchy, fresh vegetables. Balancing the indulgent appetizers with nutrient dense, filling vegetables will help you limit those heavy options without making you feel restricted.
3. Exercise. With more parties that have you eating and drinking more than usual, now is the time to prioritize working out. Try going to new fitness classes with friends or squeeze in heart-pumping workouts at home. Consistently working out will give you extra endorphins to keep you feeling great this season.
4. Wait before grabbing seconds. It is incredibly tempting to continue eating all night long, but try to take some time to listen to your body. Even if everyone is reaching for more, you don’t have to if you’re feeling full. This will help you save room for dessert and avoid over-consuming to the point of feeling uncomfortable.
5. Indulge consciously. Now is the time to enjoy the seasonal and festive foods that are not available the rest of the year. Pick your favorite dessert and consume it slowly. Savor it. You do not have to give up your favorite foods, but it is a mindfulness best practice to enjoy them leisurely.
Written by: Abby K. Cannon, Wellness Workdays Dietetic Intern