Top 11 Holiday Survival Tips: How to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

This year plan for success and avoid the Holiday battle of the bulge. Most of us have lots of parties and fun events to attend during the Christmas season;  most of which revolve around fattening foods and sweet treats. If you add in seasonal stress, lack of sleep, not working out, you have a recipe for weight gain. So, this year, let’s plan ahead for success and avoid those diet pitfalls but still enjoy ourselves.  Check out these 11 Tips that will help you stay on track and still feel in control of your waist line. 

Tip #1 Be mindful about what you are eating.
Just because the egg nog looks so good and its free, doesn’t mean you have to have it. Ask yourself if it’s worth all those calories in that small glass. This applies for lots of other things. Sometimes we mindlessly eat and drink without even thinking about the consequences. The main thing is to rate your foods on a scale of 1-10 and only pick a few of those 10’s and leave the other foods that rank low for you. Load up on healthier options like salad (watch the dressing), veggies, fruits, and keep alcohol to a minimum.

Tip #2 At the Office Holiday Party... Don’t hang out by the food. Keep moving. Get a plate with some healthy options and a few of those 9’s and 10’s I mentioned above and get away from the buffet or potluck table. Standing there devouring all the treats and snacks will only have you crying when you get on the scale the next day. Again be mindful! 

Tip #3 Be Picky. It is okay not to sample every dish at your families gathering or at your work party. Choose the items you really want and just get a small amount. You can always go back for more if you really want it. Its okay not to try Aunt Martha's mashed potatoes if you don't want to eat them. This is your body and you have to do what is best for you.This way you can taste the foods and if you don’t like it, don’t eat it. This means its okay to pick and choose what you want to put in your mouth. Kinda like what calories are worth it and which ones aren’t. For example, for me, I am not a big potato salad or macaroni salad fan. Sure they are good, but its not on the top of my list, so I would skip that and opt for something I really loved like dessert. 

Tip #4 Sip Smartly. Calories in alcohol add up fast. In order to keep your calories in check, choose wisely and pace yourself. Maybe alternate with water in between drinks, or make your own flavored water with lemon, lime and orange.

Need some lighter drink options?
A single shot of vodka, gin, or rum mixed with club or diet soda and a squeeze of lime. It will set you back only about 100 calories,
Champagne or pink Prosecco. Around 80-100 calories
Light beer or wine. Most have fewer than 150 calories per serving.

Tip #5 Eating while out Shopping

The stress of holiday shopping tends to frazzle us, exaust us and we typically have decreased will power and choose the unhealthy fast options from the food court. Plan ahead when you are headed out for shopping. Pack healthy snacks and have a plan for where you will eat lunch or dinner in advance. Sure, sometimes you will change your mind, but having a preplanned idea of what you are going to eat, will help you to make better decisions and not just go off impulses.  Keeping portion-controlled goodies in your purse will make other snacks easier to resist. Stick 30 pistachios or 24 almonds in a ziplock bag with a few tbsp of raisins or craisins, or keep Lara bars as a back up in your bag. The carb/protein combo in these foods will keep you full and help you make a better choice when its time for lunch or dinner.

Tip #6 Avoid Holiday themed coffee drinks and sweets. They tend to be much higher in calories than the regular ones, so stick to the basics.  

Tip #7 As You Bake Holiday Treats at Home ..when you are tasting batter or licking the spoon those calories all add up. They can quickly add up to a LOT! Keep the sink full of soap and place the dirty beaters and spoons in the water before you can even get a chance to lick them. It will keep you from nibbling and taking in unnecceary calories. Don’t eat raw cookie dough. Remember Salmonella?

Tip #8 At Your Family's Holiday Dinner...
Bring your own healthy dish. Bring something you know you can enjoy without the guilt and the hostess will be thankful you brought a healthy option too. I think we all secretly do want some healthier options, but many times we just don’t even know what to bring.

Tip #9 Choose your plate size on purpose.
Use your dinner plate for salads and starters and then switch to your smaller salad plate for your main course. Studies show we eat less when we use a smaller plate.

Tip # 10 Practice Portion Control. Focus on reasonable portions.  "Your total amount of carbs—potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing—should be the size of your fist," says Koff. "Shaq, for example, can eat a lot more mashed potatoes than you or I can or should." The same goes for lean proteins, which should be the size and thickness of your palm (no fingers).

Tip # 11 Stay hydrated. The winter chill can make you mistaken hunger for dehydration. Don’t overeat just because you were outside and feel famished. Drink lots of water and make sure to fuel your body properly.  Warm up with some hot green tea or hot cocoa before you head for the kitchen. Once we warm up, we are less likely to overeat. Also, we tend to get so busy we forget to drink water. Make sure to drink half your body weight in ounces. Drinking water is huge when it comes to weight loss. Download a free water app like "waterin" to help you keep track. 

And my BEST TIP: Drink Shakeology once a day to help with those cravings and give you your daily dose of superfoods, protein, antioxidants, digestive enzymes, pre and probiotics and more. It really will help you . 

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