The media likes to hype up everything….from the upcoming “storm of the century,” to the “ten pounds you’re likely to gain during the holiday season.” Fact is, most of us don’t gain that much weight during the six-week period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day.
In a recent review about holiday weight gain published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the author concluded that most healthy adults gain just over a pound during the holiday season. However, those who are overweight or obese, are more likely to gain five pounds or more during this time of year. The good news is that studies have also found what successful dieters do to maintain their weight during this eating season. Below are five proven ways to keep from gaining.
Rethink Your Drink
Beverages don’t contribute to fullness like foods do, so one proven way to keep your diet in check is to limit liquid calories. Avoiding alochol can help even more because in addition to being loaded with calories, drinking stimulates your appetite while reducing your inhibitions to decadent treats.
Up Your Exercise Intensity
One of the best ways to make your body more resistant to extra calories is to get more exercise. In a recent study from the University of Utah, researchers found that a 45-minute bout of intense exercise countered most of the negative metabolic effects associated with increased calorie intake. So even if you do overeat during, exercise can hep prevent those calories from being stored as body fat.
Downsize Your Dinnerware
Plates and bowls have increased by nearly 23% over the past several decades, from 9.6 inches in diameter to nearly 12 inches. When at a party or event, eat from appetizer or bread plates in place of the pizza-sized dinner plates. Research shows that you’ll shave about 10% or more of the calories in your meal, while feeling equally satisfied. Since we eat with our eyes, so it appears like you’re eating more when you downsize your plates and bowls.
If you Bite It, Write It
Keeping a food log of everything you eat and drink during the holidays will help consumers avoid mindless eating and will help them stick with their resolve to NOT gain weight. Even better, use a hunger scale and monitor how hungry you are before and after each meal and snack.
Eat a Protein-Packed Breakfast Every Day
Those who eat a protein-rich meal at breakfast eat fewer calories all day. Protein is the most filling nutrient and helps keep your hunger hormones in check through midday. Here’s a week’s worth of protein-rich, calorie-poor breakfasts for inspiration.