4 Tips to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain
Are you dreading packing on the pounds during the holidays? I use to feel like that when October hit after my third child was born. I bounced back right after when my first two babies were born thanks to breastfeeding and light exercise, but for some reason it has become much more of a challenge after my third (and still continues to be). In September of 2009, when my third was born, I was thrown into “holiday-mode” and let’s just say that the pregnancy hormones still coursing through me combined with all the “festive” indulgence was not a friendly weight-loss environment for me.
However, I am happy to say that the last two holiday seasons, not only did I keep the pounds off, I actually lost weight during October, November, and December! I wanted to share my easy tips anyone can do when tempted to lick your frosting-covered fingers while decorating those treats.
1. Become a “Grazer”
With all the parties I attend during the winter months, I get bombarded with food from every angle! So what’s a eater like me to do? I can tell you what I stopped doing…filling my plate over and over again and stuffing myself until I was unconformable. Instead, I now pick only a few must-try items and take a bite or two and move on. I find I fill up much faster by taking my time with the things I really want to have and I don’t feel I denied myself or regret for eating too much.
2. Make it Count
I refuse to pile on the pounds eating ordinary foods with too many unknown ingredients I cannot pronounce. I skip store-bought cookies and frozen supermarket snacks at get-togethers . When I indulge, I guarantee you it’s going to be on something amazing. Something that was prepared with care and made with quality ingredients. I have noticed with quality, there tends to be less quantity. Desserts made with rich ingredients are more satisfying – less is more. So when attending parties, skip the run-of-the-mill store-bought crap. My favorite thing to sample are homemade treats made with love from friends and family;dishes I either have no idea how to create or lack the skill to do so in my own kitchen.
3. Have a Two Drink Minimum, Most of the Time
This is a great way to keep the extra pounds off during the holidays. Alcohol adds so many extra calories in addition to your meals. However, there is also times to break your rules! Here is what I mean. On any given night I’d have an event or party, so for the run-of-the-mill occasions I initiated a two-drink minimum. But there are those special gatherings like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Eve I like to have a designated driver. You get my drift!?! Again, it’s all about moderation. I don’t over do it often so when I cut loose I don’t bash myself for packing in the additional calories.
4. Find a Good De-Stresser
Stress is a weight gain magnet! Your body reacts to stress releasing chemicals that induce to seek comfort in fatty foods. We all know the holidays can be stressful, so having a “stress plan” in place can zap your over-eating and keep off the pounds. I like to get active when stress hits. This can be a walk to pick up the kids from school or even cleaning my house! My favorite way to de-stress, thirty minutes with my kids playing Just Dance! I also know that time constraints and extra actives can also put us in a time crunch and add stress, so for the days a walk or cleaning is not in the cards, I have a secret weapon! I picked up a natural stress relief aid called Rescue Pearls. You can find them on Amazon or in most local pharmacies. They are natural herbs and extracts that dissolve in your mouth and help calm nerves. I really like them and pull them out when exercise is not an option.
How do you prevent gaining weight during the holidays? Share with us!