Holiday season is upon us and no doubt with big family dinners and parties, weight gain is inevitable.
Or is it? There are little tricks you can apply to ensure you stay trim during the festive season.
Firstly, make sure that your exercise routine doesn’t ground to a halt and you keep up some sort of physical exercise.
It might be as simple as going for a family walk before or after dinner or doing some sort of cardio such as a run, cycle or swim before you go out to party.
Although sitting around watching TV and socialising is usually on the agenda during the holidays, ensuring daily exercise is still front of mind, is key to avoiding weight gain.
Secondly snack wisely. There’s likely to be plenty of snacks going round and although it might be hard to resist the canapes, opting for healthy options such as veggie sticks and hummus or a handful of plain nuts or cheese, but skip the crackers is better over the pigs in blankets, fried calamari or puff pastry snacks.
Third, before you load up on the main meal, check in with your portion sizes. When there’s platters of delicious looking food, it’s easy to eat with your eyes rather than your stomach, but try to listen to your hunger cues and portion control the amount you are putting on your plate.
As a rule of thumb, load half your plate with veggies and salad and then a quarter with protein and the other quarter with carbs.
Eating this way will ensure you have a balanced plate that is nutrient dense and lower in calories.
Fourth, eat mindfully. Studies have shown that if we eat mindfully, we are able to tune into our hunger and fullness signals and not overeat.
Eating mindfully means chewing slowly and carefully, paying attention to the textures and taste of the food and eating without too many distractions.
Research show that those who engage in mindful eating are less likely to gain weight.
Fifth, ensure that you are getting enough sleep and aren’t getting too stressed. Sleep deprivation has been linked to lower metabolism which ultimately affecting your hunger hormones and encouraging you to eat more.
Stress also affects your hunger hormones as it increases your cortisol levels which causes us to eat more and crave sugary, fatty foods.
Manage your sleep quality and stress levels by scheduling in some meditation, yoga or deep breathing in between your busy social schedule.
Take on these tips and you’ll find your wellbeing and weight won’t crash during the silly season.