1. Problem: Going to a holiday party when hungry causes you to overeat.
Solution: “Pre-Loading” makes a difference in how much food you consume. Eat a salad or veggies and drink at least 16 ounces of water before the event. Start the meal with a protein, such as grilled chicken strips or beef, hit the veggie tray before picking a few starchy finger foods.
2. Problem: Sleep deprivation causes belly fat gain by increasing the hormones insulin, cortisol and grehlin.
Solution: Sleeping 7-8 hours is ideal. Cutting out caffeine after 2 PM and going to sleep the same time each night will help you develop proper sleep patterns.
3. Problem: Alcohol calories add up quickly. Drinking also lowers your inhibitions, so you will probably eat more than usual.
Solution: Alternating each alcoholic beverage with diet soda or water will cut your intake in half. Adding a squeeze of lemon or lime to the water makes it taste better. If you choose to drink, stick with light beer or wine, rather than sweetened martinis, margaritas or daiquiris.
4. Problem: People who eat rapidly consume 30 percent more food than those who eat slowly. It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to feel satisfied after eating.
Solution: Take your time chewing and set down your fork between bites. Eat on a smaller plate such as a salad or dessert plate. You can fill up the plate while practicing appropriate portion sizes. Try to avoid foods you can eat with your fingers. They are more often an unhealthy choice. Ex: Chips, nuts, buttered popcorn or candy
5. Problem: Many people load up their plates at holiday meals without carefully thinking about their food choices. People typically eat more at buffets because a vast selection of food is readily available
Solution: Don’t waste calories on food you don’t really want to eat. If a food item doesn’t taste great, put it down. Study the buffet carefully and select only foods you really want and healthy items. Meats and non-starchy veggies will keep you full longer. Sweets and starches will just make you more hungry. Limit yourself to one trip.
6. Problem: Our bodies have difficulty differentiating hunger from thirst, so you may eat food when you really need to drink water.
Solution: Drink at least 64 ounces of water every day. It’s calorie free and helps decrease the appetite.
7. Problem: The average person gains 4-6 pounds each holiday season.
Solution: Set a specific goal to maintain your weight over the next few months. Download FoodGauge onto your iPhone or Blackberry. This tool simplifies food labels, and helps you make food choices that will help you lose weight. See FoodGauge.com for more info on this useful app.
8. Problem: Drinking a 16-oz. soda each day will result in the equivalent of 20 pounds of weight gain annually.
Solution: Eliminate sugary drinks and juices. Instead, drink water and other non-caloric beverages.
9. Problem: Pre-planning can make the difference between maintaining your weight and putting on extra weight in the holiday season. With a little forethought, you can dodge temptation and hit the New Year without gaining any extra weight.
Solution: Know the menu and plan what you are going to eat in advance. Go online, or call the event location to inquire about the menu. Conference venues usually will disclose their menus over the phone.
10. Problem: Am I physically hungry or emotionally hungry? Stress over the holidays brings increased demands on our time, finances and family.
Solution: Try a walk in the cool air, deep breathing, 10 minutes of meditation, or a warm bath instead of heading for the refrigerator. Calming your emotions and relaxing with a little “me time” now can prevent eating regrets later.
Set a New Year’s resolution to lose weight and exercise beginning today. If you have gained weight this holiday season, we provide a guilt free environment to assist you to get your weight back on track.