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4 tips to avoid holiday weight gain

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was great! All of the food has turned out really well too, but, of course, I ended up eating too much! With all of the leftovers, I ended up eating too much all weekend too, lol! What about you? Did you eat much over the long weekend too? This is now the beginning of that busy and fun time of the year, but that usually also includes that dreaded "holiday weight gain"! There will be holiday parties, Christmas cookies, food type gifts from other companies, those popcorn trio tins, and just a ton of extra unhealthy food that is ultimately going to lead to weight gain for most people. What can you do to avoid gaining that weight during the holidays?

  1. Practice mindful eating. This is something that I always recommend and try to teach my clients. It's not about dieting, depriving yourself, restricting/avoiding any foods, counting calories, or anything like that. It's about being conscious about what you are eating and being in the moment when you are eating. How can you incorporate it around the holidays and into your daily life?

  • Don't eat in a stressful environment or when you are in a hurry. I know it's not always easy, but try to do this as much as possible. Actually take time to sit down during your meal/snack, chew your food, taste your food, and put your fork down between bites.

  • Specifically speaking about the holiday treats around the house/office, rather than just grabbing something as you walk by and eating it wherever you are going, take it with you and wait until you sit down and can enjoy it while you eat it. Sit down, take small bites, and make sure you thoroughly chew your food. You will enjoy it so much more and you will also eat much less.

  1. Try to make sure that you are eating a healthy and balanced diet and starting each day with breakfast. If you know there will be tempting food around the office, if you continue to eat a healthy lunch and have a couple snacks, you will be less likely to eat all of tempting food. Then you won't feel as guilty when you do eat some of that stuff.

  2. If you do work out regularly, continue to do that. If your schedule is making it difficult, consider changing your workout to the morning if that's possible. That way you'll get it over with right away and worn't have to worry about it later if there is something going on. Also, the winter weather can make it more difficult to work out after work, especially if you are eating some sugary treats in the afternoon, which may cause you to "crash", making you tired later.

  3. Write down what you eat. This is just so you are aware of what you are eating, not to count calories, but might make your decision about eating one more cookie easier once you see what else you have eaten that day.

Of course, some of the foods and treats that are around this time of year, we only get to eat once per year, so I would never expect anyone to deprive themselves and not eat them, but try these tips out and see if it keeps you from over-indulging!

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