We hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I should have posted this article before the main holiday where you expect to stuff your face. But I wasn’t thinking about it until I opened the fridge and saw there’s still half of a cheesecake in there. Eating leftovers from a big meal can mean that our cheat day has turned into a cheat week. Try implementing these habits in order to avoid holiday weight gain.
- Writing it down keeps the weight down.
Journaling is a healthy lifestyle habit that aids in stress and weight management. Write down your emotions, document your eating habits, and recognize patterns that trigger emotional eating. Keep track of your exercise, caloric intake, and weight. (With JRNL, you can start a journal that is solely dedicated to your food habits so that you can separate the family memories from what you had for breakfast.)
- Mind Your Bites, Licks, and Tastes.
An avalanche of bites, licks, and tastes throughout the day can have an immense effect on your caloric intake. Be aware of grazing, nibbling, and mindless eating that you may have previously ignored as inconsequential. Small bites add up to weight gain.
- Throw it out.
Don’t let your fear of food waste get to you. If you made macaroni and cheese for 75 people and you still have 20 servings left, pitch it. It’s not worth ruining your diet for the next few weeks. (That’s probably what I should do with the cheesecake.)
- Be careful with alcohol.
Holiday parties tend to have alcoholic beverages readily available. Limit yourself to 1-2 drinks or bring your own so that you know how much sugar is in each serving.
- Adopt the motto, “sitting is the new smoking.”
Researchers found that prolonged sitting has the same negative impact on your metabolism and cardiac health as smoking. Avoid being sedentary. Sneak in small amounts of walking, standing, and moving to minimize your sedentary time. This healthy lifestyle change will help keep your metabolism high and minimize regaining weight.
- Plan your meals in advance.
Don’t postpone eating until you feel hunger pangs. Meal planning makes it easy to reach for healthy foods and eat more frequent, smaller portions. Adopt this healthy habit: create a shopping list of healthy meal choices; omit fat and calorie-laden foods.
- Eat before you go.
To go along with planning your meals in advance, eating your own homecooked dinner before heading to a holiday party can help you stay on track.
- Skip the screen.
Prolonged sitting in front of the television, tablet, and computer is almost a guarantee that you will gain weight. Limiting your television watching and surfing the Internet time will motivate you to be more physically active. In addition to being a weight maintenance tool, you will improve the quality of your sleep, and have more time for hobbies, exercise, and family time!
It’s easy to get carried away at this time of year. Afterall, it is a celebration! What are your tricks to sticking with a healthy diet during the holidays?