10 Tips to Avoid Packing on the Holiday Pounds

holiday weight gain, Dr. Vincent R.C. Maribao

The rate of obesity in the United States is quite astounding. In fact, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development forecasts that by the year 2020, around 75 percent of Americans — adults and children — will be overweight or obese.

For many of us, weight gain starts small and increases over time. We develop habits that cause us to gain weight and before we know it, we’re staring in the mirror and wondering how we can get rid of the pounds.

Did you know, for example, that adults gain an average of one pound during the festive holiday season? It might not seem like much, but having an eating blowout during the holidays can help entrench dietary and behavioral habits that continue into the new year.

The good news is that you can take control of your weight gain this holiday season by following these tips:

1. Be active

It almost goes without saying, but engaging in physical activity can help battle the bulge around the waistline. Instead of sitting around watching sports or drinking alcohol this holiday season, why not head out to a park and play with the kids? It’s a fantastic way to burn off calories.

2. Preload with the good stuff

Lots of people get together to catch up with family and friends during the festive season, gatherings that almost inevitably include unhealthy snacks. Before you head out, eat some fruit and vegetables. This way you’re not only eating healthy, but filling up before the party snacks come out. You’ll be amazed at how easy it is to avoid sugary, fatty snacks when your belly is already full.

3. Distract yourself

The food buffet is a common sight at holiday parties, but instead of diving right in, why not situate yourself far away from it? You can even distract yourself by dancing to the music!

4. Bring your own food

If you’re invited to a party, it’s always a good idea to bring something. If you know that you’re going to be faced with a buffet of unhealthy snacks, bring a plate of healthy food instead. This way you’re not only contributing to the party and being a fine guest, but you’re also providing yourself with a healthy food option.

5. Listen to your body

Your body knows when it’s had enough to eat. But if you’re used to being distracted while you eat by talking to other people or looking at your smartphone, you might not notice the signals your stomach is sending. At the holidays, it’s important to practice some mindful eating. Listen to when your stomach has had enough and then stop.

6. Sleep well

Did you know that a lack of sleep is directly related to weight gain and eating fatty and sugary foods? This means that during the holidays, try to get as much sleep as you can so you can stay on top of your eating.

7. Don’t stress!

Too much stress can also lead to overeating. As our stress levels rise, we tend to crave more fatty and sugary foods. If you have a busy holiday season planned, see what you can do about reducing the stress load.

8. Watch your drinking

Even if you do partake of a few sugary snacks during the festive season, all’s not lost. You can still limit the weight gain by avoiding alcoholic and sugary drinks.

9. Trick your brain

If you struggle with taking large portions of food, you can actually trick your brain. Use a smaller plate to fill up at holiday parties, so you can control your food portion sizes while making your brain think that you’re eating plenty.

10. Find a friend

Finally, if you’re really struggling to avoid the calories, buddy up with a friend who’s on a similar quest to avoid the snacks and keep off the pounds. They say it’s easier to lose weight if you have support, and it’s definitely true during the festive season.

How can we help?

The holiday season can be great fun, but it can also lead to an increase in the waistline. If you’re struggling with your weight, at the holidays or anytime, the team at Dr. Vincent R.C. Maribao can help.

Dr. Maribao has years of experience helping people lose weight, and has seen first-hand how it can have a hugely positive impact on a person’s quality of life and self-esteem.

Call Dr. Maribao today or use the online booking tool to set up an appointment so we can discuss your weight gain issues and come up with a plan for making real and long-lasting change.

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