Holiday weight gain. ‘Tis the season when many accept gaining weight as a given, as inevitable as that certain neighbour’s house decked out with so many holiday lights that it rivals the Las Vegas strip in brightness.
But a holiday weight gain study published in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that that weight adults put on during the holidays stayson … and may be a big contributor to obesity later in life.
You can avoid the sneaky holiday weight gain by staying aware, forming a plan, and acting on it (versus the passive approach many have during the holidays; that may be fine for “Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!” but not for your health!)
Below are twelve top tips to help you avoid that holiday weight gain:
1. Drink lots of water before you head to a party, and when you’re there too. Drinking water helps you feel fuller. (This can also help you ease up on alcohol.)
2. Have a healthy snack before you head to holiday gatherings, such as your favorite fruit, vegetable, or protein. Berries are one good choice because they are low in sugar but high in fiber, which helps you feel full.
3. Sleep properly. Ideally at all times, but especially make sure you are well-rested before attending any holiday gatherings. People tend to make poorer decisions that are not in their own best interest when tired, including eating too much and eating foods that they shouldn’t. (If you sleep poorly, discover how to get a good great Zzzzzs without the dangers of addictive medications with this natural sleep aid.)
4. Don’t engage in conversations around the appetizers or buffet table. Half-consciously picking away at the foods while you’re gabbing can sneak a lot of calories into you!
5. Wear clothes that fit snuggly, or wear a belt. Some people head to holiday gatherings in their easiest-fitting clothes, which is just asking for trouble. If the snug starts to feel a little too snug, it’s a great reminder to stop eating.
6. Plan your indulgence in advance. If you absolutely KNOW you must have that piece of pumpkin pie with whipped topping on it because, hey, it’s the holidays and you’ve been doing it since you were born, have an advance plan. Allow yourself that favorite indulgence, but remind yourself you’re not going to fall into an indulgence-free-fall where you’re also consuming equal parts apple pie, sugar cookies, snowman cupcakes, and that weird fruitcake too.
7. Plan your alcohol intake in advance, too. If you plan on drinking wine, beer, or other alcohol, allow yourself one or two drinks and stick to your plan. When you passively enter a situation where, on the spot, you figure, “Oh, okay, I’ll have one glass of Merlot,” one can easily turn to three, four, or more. In addition to the obvious effects of the alcohol, that can add on some big calories quick.
8. Use smaller plates. Studies show that the larger the plate, the more food we put on it, and the more of it we tend to eat. Whether it is for appetizers or the main meal, switch to a smaller plate so you will take and eat less!
9. Keep exercising during the “lazy months”! In many parts of the world during these holidays it is cold outside, prompting people to stay inside much more. That’s a tempting invitation to reduce or even stop exercising, and all too many people accept that invitation. RESIST! Exercise has endless benefits, including of course burning those calories off and reducing your appetite.
10. Team up with a partner to keep one another committed to the plan. Share your intention to keep the holiday weight off with your buddy (spouse or other family member, friend, etc.), and the specific points of your plan. Even if you are not attending the gathering with them, you can ask them to call or text you as a reminder to stick to your goals.
11. Designate a bracelet, watch, or other piece of jewelry you will wear and see as your reminder to stick to the points of your plan to keep the holiday weight off. When you tell yourself in advance that every time you glance at your watch you will be reminded to stick to plan, it makes it even more likely that you will! A cell phone can even work.
12. If at first you don’t succeed, try again. So maybe you didn’t quite succeed at all of the tips above at that last holiday gathering. That’s okay. Just don’t use that as the excuse not to attempt to stick to them at the next holiday gathering, and so forth. Gathering after gathering you will actually improve at sticking to your plan … if you don’t let the excuse of last time get in your way!
One BIG final suggestion to beat the holiday weight gain trap: write down your own goals and plans based on the above… or print this page out.
And then post it where you are going to routinely see it, and where you will see it before heading to or hosting any holiday gatherings. Make multiple copies and post it in multiple places if you need to!
Setting these specific goals and then staying committed to them – including staying aware by putting reminders of them in key places around you – is the KEY to avoiding that holiday weight gain!
Doctors agree that internal belly flab is the most deadly kind of body
flab there is. Studies show it dramatically increases the chance of illness
such as heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers, Alzheimer’s, stroke, and
even depression (suicide).
And if that wasn’t bad enough, that dreaded belly-bulge makes us
look unattractive and it can demolish our self-esteem and confidence to
But, what makes this situation even more frustrating is the fact that belly flab
is considered by many to be the most stubborn and impossible weight to
penetrate and burn. It’s like the “Fort Knox” of body flab!
PROBLEM #1: Your Hormones Are Out of Whack!
ROBLEM #2: Your Belly-Burning Furnace Is Busted!
When you want to lose a lot of weight, you should cut calories drastically
and for long periods of time, right? WRONG.
Cutting too many calories for too long magnifies nutrient deficiencies in
your body. This results in severe cravings as your brain sends emergency
“low nutrient signals” to your stomach to eat more food.
Problem is, most people end up eating more “nutrient-dead food” which
causes cravings to completely spiral out of control. (If you feel hungry all
the time, now you know why.)
After about a week of dieting, your body is genetically programmed to fight
back by lowering the hormones responsible for keeping your metabolism humming
along (like the calorie-burning thyroid hormones).
At the same time, it can increase the “hunger hormone” leptin. (Double
whammy.) As a result, your fatloss can come to a screeching halt, lickity
At this point, to keep burning flab you’ll be forced to reduce your
calories even lower, and/or do MORE exercise. (Not fun… I’ve been there.)
PROBLEM #3: Your Food Is Laced with Obesity Additives!
GIANT food manufacturers make BIG bucks creating “Frankenstein foods” that
are stripped of belly-burning nutrients and stuffed full of dirt-cheap,
artificial preservatives that make your belly-bulge.
I call these chemicals Obesity Additives and studies show:
-They can cause a mineral imbalance that results in bloating and excess
-They can addict us by altering brain chemicals called neurotransmitters –
just like the street drugs cocaine, morphine and nicotine do!
-They can cause pounds of “toxic waste” to accumulate in our digestive
(Believe me, that belly bulge or “pooch” is not all belly flab!)
Those are the 3 BIG obstacles that can keep you from EVER getting a
…but not to worry:
There are 3 SNEAKY TRICKS you can use to quickly start overcoming
these MAMMOTH problems.
3 Sneaky Tricks to Cut Stomach Flab Faster… <— click here