It's the most wonderful time of the year, but for many of us we end up feeling like Santa after everythin is said and done. It's not the gift giving and red suit that makes us feel like the big man though, it's the weight gain.
On average most Americans will gain between five and ten pounds during the holidays, but Nebraska Medicine nutritionist Rebecca Kraay says there are ways keep extra weight off. Kraay suggests making sure you don't go to holiday parties hungry. "I think sometimes we think, 'Oh I'll skip a meal, so then I can load up once I get to that party.' But we really want to avoid going too hungry, cause its really easy then to overeat."
Kraay also suggests picking special foods, that are maybe only made during the holidays, and ditch some other things on your plate. "Pick the foods that you think you might enjoy the most and maybe skip the foods that you might not enjoy as much, or food that we can kinda get any time of the year that might not be as special."
Another way Kraay says you can keep those holiday pounds off your waistline is to engage more with friends and loved ones. "Try to focus on socializing. As much as possible remember spending time to maybe make a holiday wreath or making gingerbread houses, instead of always having the focus be around food."
Here are a few more tips to get you through the holiday season:
- Slow down when you eat, take at least 20 minutes. That will help you better understand when you're full.
- If you're hosting a party, share leftovers. Get all of the temptations out of the house.
- Focus on eating lean proteins, fruits & veggies and low-fat dairy.
- Don't add extra fats to dishes, like cooking brussel sprouts in bacon grease.
- Substitute greek yogurt for sour cream in dips.
- Cut back on your alcohol consumption.