Holiday Weight Gain: Now What?
Most of us gain 1 to 2 pounds over the holiday period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Office parties, family dinners, out of town relative receptions, and friend gatherings revolve around large amount of rich food consumption. In the setting of a sedentary lifestyle, high calorie food items including alcohol, overwhelm the neuro-hormonal system that tightly regulates body weight. Individuals with decreased metabolism are particularly vulnerable. They tend to gain more weight and have difficulty dissipating the gained weight shortly after the holidays are over.
Avoiding weight gain around the holidays is difficult. It requires will power, awareness, knowledge and mindful eating. We ask our patients to be aware of how many calories they are consuming daily and make appropriate adjustment. Increase exercise and weigh yourself regularly. If you notice your weight has increased counteract by reducing your calorie intake and increasing your activity. One technique that I find successful in holiday parties is to eat slowly, while savoring 3 to 4 bites of each food item. Always be mindful and stop eating when full. You don’t have to eat just because food is present in front of you.
It is hard to separate celebrating with family and friends from overeating and overindulging. These holiday rituals are entrenched in our psyche and culture. If you have gained weight over the past few weeks, here are some useful tips to start the new year:
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day
- Stop soda and all other sugary drinks
- Avoid sweets of all kind and take control of your sugar cravings
- Increase fiber in your diet by consuming more fruits and vegetables
- Stop all processed food
- Increase your calorie intake in the morning and reduce it in the evening
- Increase good fat sources like olive oil, avocados and reduced fried food
From Houston Weight Loss Surgery Center, we wish a happy new year full of health and happiness.