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5 Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Monday, 24 December 2012 10:19 AM

According to research, most people gain around 2 pounds a year in midlife, and the added bulk tends to arrive around holiday time. Heftier people tend to gain even more — 4.8 pounds — and as most anyone knows, weight loss doesn't come easily. Your best approach: Keep it off in the first place, and here's how.

1. Don't eat seconds, and keep the serving dish off the table. According to Dr. Mache Seibel of the Huffington Post, keeping the serving trays in the kitchen can reduce your food intake by up to 29 percent.

2. Sleep. Research has linked sleep-deprived people with increased belly fat, compared to those who slumber for seven hours. But Dr. Seibel says don't overdo it: too much sleep, more than seven hours a night, can increase belly fat as well.

3. Skip the eggnog. While drinking alcohol is part of the merriment for a lot of us, avoid drinking your calories. Opt for red or mulled wine over white wine, beer, or spirits, advise British fitness trainers Shaun Petafi and Dean Connor, in a statement from Rippedtoshreds.co.uk. Red wine is packed with fewer empty calories and higher in flavonoids, polyphenols, and heart-protecting resveratrol. Frozen creamy drinks can have as many as 800 calories, while eggnog with a jigger of rum comes at more than 400 calories a glass.

4. Control your snacking. Avoid racking up extra calories with snacks, but if you must, opt for meat or cheese rather than cakes or biscuits, say Petafi and Connor. Also monitor your appetizers, which can add 1,000 extra calories to your meal, writes Seibel.

5. Go easy on the starches. Starchy foods such as breads, rice, pasta, cakes, potatoes, and yams can cause insulin levels to spike, resulting in more fat storage, say Petafi and Connor. Opt for a second slice of turkey, but leave the stuffing alone. Or pile on the non-starchy vegetables, such as cabbage, kale, spinach, leeks, and broccoli.

© HealthDay

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Avoid the added pounds that can come with the holidays by skipping the appetizers, high-calorie alcoholic drinks, and late nights, experts advise.
Monday, 24 December 2012 10:19 AM
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