Sunday, November 10, 2013

Avoid The Additional Baggage This Holiday Season!

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  The holiday music has begun to play and the holiday commercials have begun to air. So what's the harm in a little holiday weight gain, especially if it's just a pound or two? Well, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health, most Americans never lose the weight they gain during the winter holidays. The pounds add up year after year, making holiday weight gain an important factor in adult obesity.
The good news is that you don't have to fall into this trap. It is possible to enjoy holiday goodies without putting on a single pound.  Here are a few tips to help you along your way.

1. Never Arrive Hungry - New York psychologist Carol Goldberg, PhD, says planning ahead can help you maintain discipline in the face of temptation. "Don't go to a party when you're starving," she warns. Try to have a nutritious snack beforehand. If you do arrive hungry, drink some water to fill up before filling your plate.

2. Divert Your Attention - Many people forget that there's more to a holiday party than food.  Don't Don't look at the party as just a food event.  Enjoy your friends company or dancing. Focus on something other than just the food.  Chatting is a great diversion, whether you're at a small family dinner or a large party.  Take your mind off of food and focus on the conversation.

3. Pace Yourself - Have you ever tried telling yourself you'll only eat during the first half hour of a party?  Although this may seem like a good tactic, this strategy is a mistake.  If you cram in as much as you can in half an hour, you chew faster. Chewing more slowly will fill you up with less food.  To munch at a leisurely pace, try putting your fork down between every bite. This little trick can help you stay in control.

4. Outsmart the Buffet - When dinner is served buffet-style, use the smallest plate available and don't stack or pile up your food.  Instead space your food out on your plate and limit your helpings to a single story.  Go for the simplest foods on the buffet.  Fresh fruits and vegetables and shrimp cocktail are good choices. But watch out for sauces and dips.

5. Limit Alcohol - Avoid drinking too much alcohol at holiday parties.  It's not just about calories but it's also about control.  If you drink a lot you, won't have as much control over what you eat.  If you feel out of place without a drink, try sipping water or club soda, so you have something in your hand like everyone else.

6. Be Choosy About Sweets - When it comes to dessert, be very selective. Limit your indulgences to small portions and only what is very sensual to you.  As for sampling desserts, if you only take a tiny bite of each one, You have to know yourself.  Some people can eat one bite of something and stop. However, if you know you're the type who can't stop at one bite, you're better off taking a small portion of a single dessert than piling your plate with several treats you plan to "try.

7. Bring Your Own Treats - Whether you're going to a friend's party or an office potluck, consider bringing a low-calorie treat that you know you'll enjoy. Bringing your own dessert will make the more fattening alternatives less tempting.  And don't feel like your dessert has to be typical holiday fare.  Get away from thinking about what holiday food has to be.  For example, people love fruit.

8. Limit Taste Testing While Cooking - If you do a lot of cooking during the holidays, crack down on all those "tastes.  People lose their appetites when they've been cooking because they've been eating the whole time.  Instead of tasting mindlessly every few minutes, limit yourself to two small bites of each item before and after seasoning.  Just put the spoon in and taste a little bit instead of going for that "big scoop."

9. Walk It Off - Make a new holiday tradition of "the family walk."  Besides burning some extra calories, this will get everyone away from the food for awhile.  Get people off the couch and move.  Go out for a walk as a family before or after the meal.  Walking not only benefits you physically but also puts you in a mindset to be more careful about what you eat.  There's just something about activity that puts you in control.

10. Get Some Help - Whether you follow the advice listed above, or you implement your own plan of action, there is nothing wrong with reaching out and asking for some additional help.  In my world of hypnosis, not only do we assist people with losing weight, but we also can help people prevent weight gain in the 1st place.  So if you believe that you are the type of person who cannot abide by any weight management plan during the holiday season, contact us today.  After all, a little preventative weight management today - just might help you avoid making weight loss your New Years resolution. 

Visit Positive Change Hypnosis

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