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10 Tips for Weight Management During the Holidays

Published in Weight Management, For the Health of It, Healthy Eating Tips Author: Anna Leitch,RDN,LD

You don’t have to wait until after the holidays to make lifestyle changes. You can choose to make changes at any time in your life or during the year. It’s important to set realistic expectations. Sometimes just maintaining your weight during the holiday season is a win.

Weight maintenance is a skill that most people don’t practice. They’re usually gaining or losing, but rarely focused on staying the same. Sometimes, the holidays can be a great time to practice staying put.

If you are watching what you eat and trying to reduce your weight, there are some steps you can take to be proactive.

  1. Continue to eat three meals a day at appropriate times. Avoiding meals can lead to overwhelming hunger, loss of control and overeating at the last meal. This will only leave you feeling uncomfortably full.
  2. Try to incorporate vegetables and protein with each meal.
  3. Listen to your body’s natural fullness cues. Stop eating when you feel satisfied — you’re no longer hungry but not full either. You will feel like you could eat more but you don’t.
  4. At your holiday gathering, bring a dish to share and opt to provide the vegetables. This way, you know there will be something you can add to your meal.
  5. If you have your eye on the desserts, assess all your options and pick your favorite one to enjoy. If you’re considering a second dessert, bring it home and enjoy it another day.
  6. Sometimes it can be helpful to let loved ones know you’re trying to make more nutritious choices. Let them know that one way they can support you on your journey is to let you pass on the indulgence.
  7. Bring a “to-go” box and let your loved ones know you’d like to try what they’re offering later when you’re not as full.
  8. Keeping up with your usual movement and exercise routine can help balance out the increased intake of food during the holidays, but it’s not necessary to overcompensate for holiday eating.
  9. Continue to drink plenty of water!
  10. Holidays don’t need to last the entire week. Enjoy one or two days of indulging and then get back on track with your normal routine.

Keep moving forward and try not to worry about every extra calorie or dessert. Life is about balance — normal eating includes enjoying special holiday food. For more tips on weight management, make an appointment to speak with your primary care physician.