- The average person gains 5 lbs between Thanksgiving and New Years Day!
- The holiday weight gain is one reason that your weight creeps up from year to year.
What can I do to prevent gaining weight over the holidays?
- The best advice is to change your mind-set. Do not expect to lose weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Instead, focus on not gaining weight. For success, keep a regular exercise pattern and healthy diet during this time. After all, the fine food of the holiday is one of the pleasures of the season.
- Allow yourself to splurge on foods that make your holiday season meaningful. Enjoy your favorites in small amounts. Try to cut back in other ways, and keep your exercise schedule on track.
How can I stay on track and not overeat at holiday functions?
You can keep your calorie intake under control in many ways. Try these tips and see which ones work best for you:
- Survey the entire table before you take any food. Decide what foods are worth eating and which you can ignore, and then stick to that decision. Why waste calories on foods that do not bring you pleasure?
- Eat a snack before you leave home. If you arrive at a party starving, you are more likely to eat too much.
- Eat your calories instead of drinking them. Stick to lower calorie or calorie-free drinks (diet sodas, water, lite beer, or a wine spritzer), instead of punches, eggnog, and mixed drinks that can have up to 500 calories/cup.
- Sip a large glass of water between every alcoholic drink, nonalcoholic punch, or eggnog. This will help keep you hydrated, and you will drink fewer calories by the end of the night.
- When you are hosting, make sure the menu includes lower-calorie foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. When you are a guest, bring along a lower-calorie dish to share.
- Try not to hang out near the food. Find a comfortable spot across the room, and focus on people instead of eating.
- Watch your portion sizes. Do not cover your plate completely with food. When it comes to holiday sweets and alcoholic beverages, less is better.
- Drop out of the “clean plate club.” Leave a few bites behind every time you eat, especially if you are eating something you do not really care for.
- Enjoy your favorite holiday treats, but take a small portion, eat slowly, and savor the taste and texture of the wonderful foods of the season.
|Higher Calorie Options||Lower Calorie Options|
|4 oz Roasted Turkey leg with skin = 417 calories||4 oz Roasted Turkey breast without skin = 142 calories|
|2 tbsp creamy dips = 97 calories||2 tbsp salsa = 9 calories|
|1 medium croissant = 231 calories||1 medium dinner roll = 76 calories|
|1/8 slice pecan pie = 502 calories||1/8 pumpkin pie = 315 calories|
|1/8 slice cheesecake =450 calories||1/8 apple pie = 310 calories|
|8 oz egg nog = 394 calories||Apple cider = 120 calories|
|8 oz margarita = 340 calories||8 oz red wine = 188 calories|
|12 oz pumpkin spice latte = 300 calories||12 oz coffee with non fat creamer = 20 calories|
***P.S. that 502 calories of pecan pie will take about 2 ½ hrs of walking 3.5 mph or running 11 min mile for 1 hr 10 minutes to burn off!! Keep exercising and get your workouts in!
Estelle L. Benoit, RD, LDN