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7 Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

7 Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain
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By    |   Tuesday, 27 November 2018 11:54 AM

The holiday season brings more than just cheer and family gatherings – it also brings calorie-laden meals. Typical holiday dinners can have upwards of 3,000 calories, according to the Calorie Control Council. That’s over a day’s worth of energy packed into one meal!

Most holiday dishes are loaded with calories, but add a few appetizers and a cocktail here and there, and you have the makings of a diet disaster.

Here are a few strategies top nutritionists recommend, according to Prevention,that can help you survive the holidays and stay on track without adding extra pounds:

  • Plan your pre-game. Don’t arrive hungry, says Jen DeWall, RDN, a sports performance expert and weight loss coach from Des Moines, Iowa. “Arriving at a party hungry and then facing a smorgasbord of choices is the perfect storm for overeating regardless of your will power.” Eat a normal, nutrition breakfast and lunch or have a high protein snack such as a cup of low-fat cottage cheese, Greek yogurt or a hard-boiled egg before arriving at your soiree.
  • Make your plate. Instead of grazing, take a few laps around the table and decide which foods to enjoy. Then make yourself a plate. “Eat only what you put on your plate,” says DeWall. “I know plates can be piled high but it’s nibbling that that gets people into trouble. Most of the time, we eat many more calories picking here and there than eating one plate of food.”
  • Give yourself yellow and green light foods. Instead of banning certain foods, assign the food a value, says DeWall. For example, go crazy with fruits, vegetables, and sushi which are green light foods and exercise caution with thick sauces, cheese, sweet treats and alcohol. Of course, if you have any food allergies, certain foods may be in the red light district!
  • Take your time. A crucial component to controlling holiday feasting is to take your time and savor the gathering, not just the grub. “You may want to ask each guest to offer their thoughts of gratitude after the first course,” suggests Jennifer Schultz, a Pilates instructor from Florida who learned that trick from her mom. “When you take the focus away from the food for a moment and place it on other things, you take time out to re-evaluate.”
  • Don’t feel obligated to eat every bite. Even though many of us grew up with “clean your plate” ethics, you should not feel guilty about taking a courtesy bite of your hostess’ homemade food and leaving the rest.
  • Skip the cocktails. Alcohol has 7 calories per gram making it one of the most calorific foods — next to fat -- you can consume. And mixed drinks and cocktails can pack an extra wallop. For example, a five-ounce Mai Tai has 260 calories while the same amount of Merlot wine has just 119 calories. Drink spirits plain or add soda water, experts suggest.

Be kind to yourself. Even if you don’t stick to the plan your set up for yourself and eat that extra cookie, stop the shame game before it begins.

“There’s no point beating yourself up for something that has already happened,” says nutritionist Anne Mauney, creator of fANNEtasticfood.com. “Learn from that experience and take that reminder to be more mindful next time.”

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The holiday season brings more than just cheer and family gatherings - it also brings calorie-laden meals. Typical holiday dinners can have upwards of 3,000 calories, according to the Calorie Control Council. That's over a day's worth of energy packed into one meal!
avoid, holiday, weight gain, tips
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2018-54-27
Tuesday, 27 November 2018 11:54 AM
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