Worried about too many sugar plums or candy canes this holiday season? How about mocha lattes in the morning followed by champagne cocktails at night? Or maybe it’s the traditional neighborhood cookie swap or the overly processed food at the holiday oﬃce party?
Whether it’s your own home cooking or the enticement of marketing around you, there are endless luscious holiday indulgences that your stomach says “yes!” to while your waist says, “no!”.
At the holidays, the worst foods for us can also be the most enjoyable. Carbs and fats combined can make for one delicious meal – but overtime, it can also add bloating, weight gain, and stubborn extra inches.
Unfavorable carbs can include:
– white bread
and when put together with fats such as:
– rich meats
you can find yourself suﬀering from an uncomfortable holiday season.
So what can you do to keep your weight in check?
This year, we’ve got 3 mantras to keep in your back pocket so you can stay healthy AND enjoy those chestnuts over the open fire!
- Forget about losing weight and focus on maintaining it.
Yes, we said it…forget about losing weight over the holidays.
We know you may want to fit into that special dress and look your best for the New Year’s Eve party you’ve been invited to, but this year it may just be more enjoyable and less stressful if you forgo losing that pound or two and put your energy into keeping your weight stable instead.
Rather than saying “no” to every ounce of goodness this holiday season while starving yourself or working out way too much, accept yourself as who you are now and make it a goal to maintain that for the next month.
Did you indulge over the weekend? Then make it a priority to get some extra vegetables in your diet this next week and drink plenty of water to flush out toxins.
Know your going to a party tomorrow evening? Stock up on fibrous fruits and vegetables to snack on throughout the day so you can splurge on the fondue later on.
Sitting in the car next week for a long drive to the in-laws house? Make sure not to miss any weekly workouts beforehand and get up an hour early that day for an at-home HIIT workout or yoga session you can watch on your phone before you leave.
- It’s all about moderation.
This holiday season, keep two numbers in mind: 80 and 20. And by this, we mean eat healthy 80% of the time and give yourself room to indulge 20% of the time.
With so many decadent meals and beverages it can be hard to stay strict with rigid diets, so rather than eradicating every ounce of fun, try to make as many meals as healthy as possible so you can say yes to that glass of eggnog!
If your weekends are filled with outings and rich meals, opt for staying mindful during the week and keeping your diet on track. Cut down on sugars, carbs, and fats while trying to include as many whole foods with fiber and protein as you can (hint: mostly vegetables).
This simple equation is an easy way to keep perspective without the guilt!
- Fiber is your friend.
Concerned you’ll reach for that extra cookie or two?
Know that you’ll walk into a party and go straight for the rolls?
When it comes to not overindulging, fill up on fiber. Fiber keeps your stomach feeling full and slows the spike in blood sugar. Eating some fiber before walking out the door for a party or even snacking on fiber throughout the day can keep you from going crazy at the buﬀet or sneaking an extra piece of pie at the end of the night.
Throughout the season, keep fiber in the forefront of your mind. Add sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, green beans, broccoli, beans, lentils, bananas, oranges, berries, and other fibrous foods to your diet as much as possible during this time.
Our favorites before attending a party or going out?
– carrots and hummus
– nuts and seeds
– apple and almond butter
– blueberries and raspberries
– tuna and avocado
In addition to these three approaches, try to:
– throw out excess sweets after 1-2 days.
– enjoy a fibrous fruit (such as a tangerine) before eating the cookie if you feel a craving. If you still want the cookie after the fruit, go ahead and eat it. At least you got some fiber in!
– think of a few foods or drinks you can swap out some of the time such as a tea instead of a latte or bowl of fruit for dessert instead of cake during the week.
If you find cravings and weight fluctuations are bringing on stress and worry and you live in Castle Rock, Castle Pines, Lone Tree, Highlands Ranch, Centennial, Parker, Larkspur, Monument, Colorado Springs, or the Greater Denver Metro area, please call us at (303) 688-6698 or click here to schedule a free 15 minute phone consultation with Dr. Graves to talk about options that can be helpful for cravings and weight changes.
This year, let the holidays be glorious, not guilt-ridden!