Statistically, Americans gain between 1 and 10 pounds each year during the holiday months starting with Thanksgiving through Valentine’s Day. Temptation is everywhere; it’s at holiday parties, the office, at the homes of friends and even in your own kitchen. So you need to keep a sharper, more vigilant eye on your goal in order to make wise choices – for starters, select smaller portions of those irresistible goodies, avoid the unconscious urge to taste everything that’s set before you and limit your alcohol consumption.
Holiday festivities traditionally revolve around food and the pressure to overindulge can throw any well-intentioned dieter into a tailspin. So be conscious of what you eat and select smaller portions. Dish out an appetizer-sized serving instead of a towering plate full. Remember to stick to your healthy regimen when you’re not at parties and, by all means, avoid the lunch room at work; it’s a place where baked goods abound during the holidays.
Be sensible. If you must have a piece of pumpkin pie, a slimmer slice will help promote a trimmer you. If you’re baking for friends, resist the urge to sample your wares and get them packed up and out of your house as quickly as you can. If you’re going to a holiday party, don’t go on empty – have something light to eat first, the less hungry you are to start with, the less inclined you’ll be to overeat.
Avoid using comfort foods to compensate for a loss. The holidays can be a sad time, especially if you’ve recently lost a loved one. Fill the void with supportive friends and family – not food.
When the weather turns cold, the temptation is to turn to warm and comforting foods to keep the chill away. Dress right for the cooler weather and stick to your normal eating regimen. Don’t slip into patterns of overeating or start bulking up on carbs as a way to stay warm this winter.
Most importantly, remember that the holidays are about family and friends – not food. So keep your focus on the real meaning behind the festivities and enjoy the season!