The holidays are a time when family and friends gather to enjoy each other’s company, and do a lot of eating! Indulgent meals, bountiful buffets, cookie swaps, holiday parties, etc. It’s no surprise that maintaining a healthy weight can present even more challenges during the holidays than throughout the rest of the year. Weight gain does not have to be inevitable, though. Follow these tips to avoid the extra baggage this year
Keep to your meal routine. Try to eat at roughly the same times each day.
Go reduced-fat. Choose low-fat foods when possible.
Walk off the weight. Aim for 10,000 steps each day.
Pack a healthy snack. Choose fresh fruit or low-calorie yogurt instead of chocolate or chips.
Look at the labels. Check food labels for fat and sugar content.
Caution with your portions. Don’t heap food on your plate, and think twice before having second helpings.
Up on your feet. Stand up for 10 minutes every hour.
Think about your drinks. Choose water or calorie-free drinks, and limit alcohol.
Focus on your food. Slow down, and don’t eat in front of the TV or on the go.
Don’t forget your 5-a-day. Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables each day.
Don’t forget your protein. Make sure getting in protein source with every meal.
More Strategies to Prevent Holiday Weight Gain
Mark holiday events you’ll be attending on your calendar so that you remember to plan ahead. If you’re not eating your meal at home for the event, eat lighter during the day to balance the extra calories you may consume at the party.
The workplace can be dangerous around the holidays. Between holiday lunches and office parties it can be difficult for even the most health-conscious employee to make smart choices. If the team is going out for a special holiday lunch, choose lower-calorie items and go light on dinner that evening.
If you are the host and are always wanting to taste while cooking, try chewing sugar-free gum while preparing the meal, or have a small snack before you start cooking. Serve plenty of raw vegetables and yogurt-based dips to start the event and fresh fruit to finish. At the end of the night send as many leftovers you can with friends and family.