How to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Is holiday weight gain traditional for you? With all the seasonal pressure, holiday food temptation may seem just too hard to fight. 

So every year you give in and pretend you’ll lose those extra pounds after the holidays. 

But studies show the average 2 to 7 lbs. of holiday weight gain are rarely lost. Maybe it’s time to learn how to avoid holiday weight gain from the get go. The 7 steps below can help you have a happier, healthy holiday. 

And instead of feasting on fatty food, you’ll feel fulfilled with festive fun!

Then come January 1st, you can begin the New Year with fresh new goals, instead of the same-old, same-old goal of undoing holiday weight gain. 

Although the holidays may not be the best time to lose weight, by following these seven steps, you can easily maintain your current weight throughout the holiday season and end up weighing less without the stress.  

Make a commitment & plan. For most people, eating unhealthy fatty foods and sweets is addictive. To avoid holiday weight gain, like any weight gain, start with a lifelong commitment to healthy eating. Figure out what’s more important to you than eating addictive foods and use your motivating desire to make a strong commitment and a foolproof plan. 

Prepare ahead for each event. Calmly think it through, make a plan and visualize a positive outcome for every holiday gathering. Eat a healthy, low-calorie (but filling) snack beforehand – never go hungry! And, if it’s appropriate, bring along a healthy dish to share with others.

Keep your eyes on the prize. Focus on your goal instead of addictive unhealthy foods. If you know what you want and your commitment and desire are strong enough, it’ll be easy to always choose plain, low calorie veggies, lean protein, whole grains, raw nuts and fresh fruit. 

Drink plain water, avoid alcohol. Not only does holiday alcohol add empty calories, it also stimulates appetite and reduces your willpower. At social events, stick with a lemon twist in “bubbly” water and, if you must have a drink, use it as a relaxing reward when you get home. 

Be active & exercise every day. Don’t let the busyness of the season or colder weather give you an excuse not to exercise. Physical activity not only burns calories, it also helps to reduce feelings of stress. So, besides your regular exercise routine, find other ways to stay active. 

Manage control of your holidays. You don’t have to be a victim of frantic holiday obligations. You can tactfully turn down invitations, decline to go into holiday-spending debt and politely refuse to eat food that doesn't serve your goals. You can host your own healthy holiday party or make reservations where you can order what works for you. You can take charge and do it your way to have a happy healthy holiday this year. 

Maintain a positive frame of mind. Learning how to avoid holiday weight gain can be a challenge. But the holidays can also be a fabulously fun time of year. Just focus on nonfood fun. And if you mess up, don’t stress out over it. Forgive yourself and anyone else involved, get back on track and do whatever it takes to have a happy, healthy holiday! 


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