Holidays should be all about fun, but don’t forget about your diet. Sure, it’s a holiday, and you shouldn’t need to worry about letting loose and treating yourself. But by following some strategies, you will be able to have fun and cheat a little bit on your diet while still avoiding holiday weight gain. You will face some hardcore challenges with snacks and desserts lurking from every corner. The cocktails should also be kept at a minimum.
Nobody wants to get discouraged after a holiday; holidays are all about enjoying the fruits of your hard work, not the dessert and fats of your hard work. Enjoy the holiday and all its goodness responsibly, and keep smiling when you return home.
You will have no trouble keeping your figure while still indulging in summery cheer by following this guide.
1. Don’t Skip Meals
By skipping meals, you’re not actually doing yourself a favor. Although you may think saving your calories is a good idea, it could worsen things. If you’re going to dinner and want to skip breakfast to compensate, you will probably end up eating unhealthy foods or snacks later on during the day. All that snacking will quickly lead to excessive holiday weight gain.
To keep your body weight consistent, the best option when wanting to have a large dinner and not overeat during the day is to have a breakfast that is well balanced with carbs, healthy fat, and protein. As soon as you get to your planned dinner holiday party, you won’t be overindulging in too many appetizers or other fattening snacks.
So, there’s no reason your holiday season should be all carbs and no protein; your body is not on holiday as you are. Make sure that you have some protein with each meal to help you maintain your weight. Besides, protein is not a punishment – it increases metabolism levels just by adding about 25 grams of protein to each meal.
2. Watch Portions and Prioritize Veggies
We understand holiday food is to die for, but it is also a killer when it comes to weight management. As you know, veggie is one of the most important foods to eat daily, but portions are still vital to prevent weight gain. After working hard for your holiday, holiday eating and overpacking your plate may seem like a well-deserved spoil. But you will regret it afterward when your outfits no longer fit you.
To keep that extra pound at bay, fill your plate with veggies if you are really in the mood for a more significant portion than usual. This can prevent overeating anything you will regret eating. As vegetables are high in fiber, they will keep your heart and digestion healthy. Most importantly, veggies will slow down your digestive rate, so you feel full sooner. Not only will you be eating healthy but will also not feel like eating much more than what’s on your plate.
Dessert is another one of those real holiday cheers. It puts a smile on your face and extra pounds all around. We’re not saying you shouldn’t enjoy some dessert, but definitely keep an eye on the amount you indulge in. Al little bit goes a long way. You can also swap out that extra piece of pumpkin pie for a plate of fresh fruit.
3. Make Time to Move
Keep on moving, moving. The holidays can be busy, so you will probably be out and about and busy mingling. But that doesn’t mean that you should skimp on your exercises. You might be busy and not really feeling motivated to exercise on holiday, but you’ll be sorry if you don’t. There should always be time for a quick run to get rid of those extra calories; even a quick walk can do wonders on holiday, even just to experience the scenery.
It is not necessary to sign up for a new gym or fitness center, just keep moving, and you will be able to keep your fitness goals intact. So move it and watch your summer holiday weight gain disappear.
4. When in Doubt, Bring Your Own Dish
Some get-togethers or visits during the holiday could make it challenging to get your regular dose of healthy foods and to stick to your diet. Taking your own food just in case there’s a BBQ or cheese party will help you keep your weight loss efforts successful.
Nobody wants to be the weird one who brings their food to a dinner party; it looks snobbish and doesn’t really fit the description of being ‘friendly.’ However, there’s a way to include the rest, only take healthy fat-free dishes or a healthy snack to the gettogether.
Most healthy foods nowadays are tasty and not at all bland or, well, awful. It makes things easy to make up healthy and delicious dishes for everyone to enjoy. Be careful of your holiday meal, if you get fewer calories and maintain healthy eating habits then you will never gain extra weight during your holiday treat.
5. Find an Accountability Buddy
Going on holiday with your friends, kids, or hubby can work out… not so well when it comes to sticking to a diet. It could be wise to take somebody with you on holiday that has the same feeling about carbs, fats, healthy eating, and just sweating the bad stuff out.
Take a friend with you who will not give in but give you a good smack when you are not sticking to the program – someone who will motivate you to replace the hearty helping of mashed potatoes with a green salad. Having somebody with you with the same weight loss goals provides excellent camaraderie and helps you keep up with your weight loss goals. With holidays weight gain out of the picture, you will be able to enjoy the afterglow of your holiday and not be angry at yourself for how you have cheated on your diet.
So, bring a friend to help you avoid holiday weight gain. It will certainly help you to not bring back too much “baggage” after the holidays, because let’s face it, you will be indulging a little bit more on holiday. And that is okay – we all need spoils sometimes.
6. Drink Responsibly and Strategically
One of the best parts of a holiday – sit back, relaxing, and sipping on a cocktail. Yes, a cocktail, not nine cocktails. You should be able to enjoy your alcoholic beverages, but stay responsible and don’t overindulge. These mixed drinks contain a lot of sugar. Even at a holiday gathering, you may get into a lot of trouble just by drinking some traditional eggnog or mulled wine. We’re not saying you should be dry or not drink anything, but just be responsible, count your calories, and make the right food choices. Consider drinks lighter drinks or any drinks that have less sugar.
We know how it goes; your friends will not be taking your reluctance to drink in their stride. You are on holiday, after all. So maybe just opt to be the designated driver? Just remember, you will probably not be able to drink anything in that case.
It’s important to also remember that it’s not just alcohol that’s fattening. Soda and other calorie-rich beverages can also get you into trouble and out of your clothing size. Drinking infused water will help you maintain your weight and bring new tastes into your holiday. Summer holiday weight gain can easily be avoided with responsibility towards any sugary or alcoholic drinks.
7. Pretend You’re in a Restaurant
It’s all about mindfulness. Imagine a fine dining restaurant; you get small portions that are beautifully decorated. It’s not about stuffing your face, but rather about enjoying the food, mindful eating, and tasting every bite. Pretending that you are out in a fine dining restaurant can save you from building up those extra pounds. Whether out for a picnic, holiday dinner party, or just having dinner, make it fancy and enjoyable.
But it’s not just about the taste; you also need to eat at ‘restaurant pace’ – take it slow. Even if you are hungry, you will feel fuller sooner when you are not chasing to finish. Its even been proven by various studies that if you are distracted and not eating with mindfulness, you are likely to overeat. Look at every crumb and taste every ingredient; you will be enjoying your food more while also avoiding extra pounds. Average holiday weight gain is normal, but you don’t want to be coming back with a twin, so grab a smaller plate
Another essential factor with fine dining and other restaurants is that the portions are not that big. So, imagine what a restaurant will be serving as a portion and only have that amount.
Regret Nothing – Be Responsible
So, if you are likely to cheat on your diet, this guide can help you to keep your weight loss goals intact and the extra pounds away. Follow this guide and look and feel great while still enjoying the holidays and all their sweetness. Be mindful, responsible, and don’t overeat. Desserts, alcoholic beverages, and snacks will be lurking in every corner.
And while they may look innocent enough, they are the real culprits in holiday weight gain. Remember, a healthy weight is a happy weight, so enjoy those holiday goodies in moderation. Maintain proper body mass index and enjoy your new years day.
We are sharing related stories and articles on our blog. You also read also those articles for building healthy habits and reducing holiday stress.
Reinette Robbertze is a highly qualified professional in the health and nutrition industry, having completed both Journalism and Nutrition diplomas. With a remarkable portfolio of health blogs and magazine articles to her name, Reinette’s writing is fueled by her genuine passion for healthy living. Drawing on her academic background, Reinette delivers authentic and insightful information to her readers. Her engaging writing style, blended with personal anecdotes, creates an immersive experience that keeps readers engaged and informed. Keep following her work for the latest updates and informative articles on health and nutrition.