While some people struggle with overeating all year round, overeating during the holiday season is something that just about everybody has to contend with. It’s far too easy to over-indulge on all those holiday treats that people bring into work, or over-consume from those holiday party buffet tables. The next thing you know, your pants and skirts are tight, or just won’t zip or button up anymore and you’re already making your usual New Year’s resolution to lose weight. Well, why not avoid the typical holiday weight gain this year and use the following tips to keep your weight in check and prevent the addition of excess pounds.
Tips to prevent overeating during the holiday season.
* Don’t go to holiday parties or function overly hungry. While you think you may be saving up your daily caloric intake by not eating the entire day before a holiday function, this actually sets you up for a higher risk of overeating. And, overeating of things you normally wouldn’t even eat. Just eat lighter throughout your day, making sure to include lots of healthy veggies and high fiber food that will keep you just the right amount of satiated, thus warding off the potential to eat 4000 calories of high sugar, high trans fat holiday food in a single evening.
* Try to serve yourself vs. having someone else fill your plate. This way, you can control both your portion size as well as your food selections.
* Chew s-l-o-w-l-y. Try to make your meal last 15-20 minutes, putting your fork or spoon down in-between bites. Eating too fast overrides your brain’s ability to signal fullness.
* Drink a full glass of water 20-30 minutes before eating.
* Once you’ve finished eating, socialize away from the food tables. This will prevent finger nibbling for hours on end. Many people greatly underestimate how much excess food they ingest when finger nibbling off of others plates or a buffet table. Just one here and there, done every several minutes, can add up to more food than you think.
* Create a 1 plate rule. You can fill up your plate 1 time. No second or third trips to the buffet table.
* Don’t forgo your exercise routine during the holidays. Yes, it becomes more challenging to keep your regular workout regimen going, but even if you just shorten the duration of your workout time, you’ll be helping to keep your metabolism running smoothly, maintaining insulin sensitivity (which starts to reduce after 48 hours of no exercise) and keep your hunger hormones in balance.
* If you don’t want to eat something; don’t eat it. Don’t eat that triple layered pecan-fudge cake if you’re full, or if you just do not care for it. In other words, don’t eat something to appease someone.
* When consuming alcoholic drinks, stay away from sugary drink concoctions and choose wine or champagne instead. And, for every glass of alcohol you drink, follow it with a glass of water.
Now, all those overeating prevention tips being said, it’s okay to indulge in a little extra holiday fare during the holiday season. Just try to choose wisely, perhaps add in a little extra exercise time if you can, and always make sure to drink half of your body weight in water each and every day. Preventing holiday weight gain is easier than you think, and yes, you can do it while still enjoying all those delicious holiday foods that you enjoy.
Bon Veggie Appetit!
Gina “The Veggie Goddess” Matthews