How To Avoid Those Extra Pounds During The Holidays
It’s always a struggle to stay healthy during the holidays. Your family is making extravagant meals, pie and cookies are always available, and your coworker just bought you a box of chocolates for Secret Santa. Temptation is everywhere. Here’s how to make sure the holiday pounds don’t pack on.
Portion Control Is Key
If you want to stay healthy during the holidays, portion control is one of the most important parts. You don’t have to be a glutton to enjoy a good holiday meal. If you portion it correctly, it’ll be a lot healthier and won’t do as much damage, even if it’s high-calorie. Do some research on proper portions of certain holiday foods you know will be on the table ahead of time. You’ll also feel a lot better about yourself after when everyone is miserable from overeating.
Keep Up Your Exercise Routine
Your schedule gets thrown out of whack during the holidays, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up your normal exercise routine. In order to maintain your weight and stay healthy during the holidays, exercise is needed. Wake up before the festivities begin and go for a run or do yoga. Encourage your family to come outside for a walk or some touch football. Traveling and visiting family isn’t an excuse to just give up your routine.
Choose Healthier Drinks
Holiday parties are often filled with wine, eggnog and other indulgent drinks. Having a small glass for taste won’t hurt, but stick with water for the rest of the night. Drinks may not fill you up, but they can bring a lot of empty calories with added sugar and alcohol. Sodas and juices can add on the calories as well.
Plan Your Indulgences
You know you aren’t leaving your family dinner without a slice of your mom’s pumpkin pie or some of Grandma’s famous cookies. Plan ahead for foods you know you’re going to indulge in. Indulging in delicious “cheat” foods isn’t a bad thing in a controlled setting. This way you can plan for cutting down food during the meal to make up for dessert, or just have an idea of the portion you’re going to have. Enjoy, just don’t go crazy.
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Bring A Healthy Food
If you’re having a potluck, bring something on the healthy side so you know at least one healthy food will be available. The holidays don’t have to be about just stuffing, gravy and macaroni and cheese. Bring a healthier option that’s appealing to a wide variety of taste buds. Contrary to popular belief, healthy food doesn’t have to be bland. Show everyone their assumptions about health food are wrong.
Cook A Bit Lighter
If you’re in charge of the bulk of the holiday meal this time, try cooking a bit lighter. Look for lower calorie and less fatty versions of the holiday staple foods. Introduce more vegetables and some new, healthy dishes. For potatoes and some other veggies, avoid the casseroles with all those added ingredients. Keep things simple and light, instead of loading everything with butter and cream sauces.
Eat Before The Party
You’d get a stern talking to from your mother if you ate before her holiday dinner. But if you’re going to your work’s holiday party, eat something beforehand. If the party is buffet style, there are always foods you’re going to want to pick at since they’re in front of you all evening. But if you eat beforehand, you’ll be less tempted to eat those foods. That way you’ll only indulge in a few things that you really want instead of a bunch of food just because it’s there.
Freeze Your Leftovers
Everyone always talks about living off their holiday leftovers for a week or two after the holidays are over. Instead, freeze those leftovers right away. Holiday food is great for an occasional indulgence, but you don’t want to keep indulging for an entire week. Freeze the leftovers and maybe thaw them out a dish at a time. That way, you aren’t eating all of those fattier foods all at once again.
Holidays are meant for a little indulging. Just make sure that indulging is done responsibly. If you keep up exercising and watch what you eat, you’ll make it out of this holiday season without the dreaded weight that usually comes with it.
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