Are The Kilos Sneaking Up On You During Holidays?
Are you the type who goes by Melanie White's phrase, "It's the holiday season. Let the overeating begin!"? If you are, do not worry! More than half the world's population is with you! After all, isn't that what the holidays are for? To have fun, eat good food, and celebrate with family and friends?
But here's the catch: The things that make a wonderful holiday- the food, the fun, and the celebrations- are the hurdles that make it challenging to stick to your fitness routine. This is precisely why weight gain is synonymous with the holiday season. An online meme goes like this, " It is the holiday season. Don't forget to set your scales back by ten pounds at midnight!"
Jokes apart, holidays do not have to be synonymous with weight gain. Holistic weight loss programs that advocate healthy weight loss measures are gaining momentum. GETFit360, Chennai, implements weight loss programs based on psychological and motivational approaches. The program instils sensible practices that become lifetime habits leading to a healthier lifestyle.
So, believe us when we say that it is possible to have an unforgettable holiday, loosen the reigns a bit, AND maintain your weight. The solution? Embrace some healthy lifestyle changes right now before the season is in full swing.
There's no time to waste. Let's get going!
10 Lifestyle Changes To Make Your Holidays Guilt-Free
Why are we suggesting lifestyle changes and not fad diets to drop those kilos? Fad diets are like a flash in the pan. You may lose weight and your health along with it. On the contrary, lifestyle changes provide you with a sustainable framework for the rest of your life. Lifestyle changes help you lose excess weight while simultaneously upgrading your overall health. These changes reward you with long-term benefits that no fad diet can give you.
Here's a list of practical, easy, and healthy ideas to implement when holidaying.
1. Adopt mindful eating
The first and foremost way to avoid bingeing during the holidays is to practice mindful eating. Mindful eating is a process where you make a conscious effort to eat healthily, stick to portions, and eat at the right time. Mindful eating requires an effort to resist the temptation to overindulge, especially when you encounter calorie-rich, tasty food items. The trick is to pay attention to what you eat, savour every bite, and avoid eating when distracted.
2. Learn to say "No."
Learn to say no to holiday functions and parties or say no to the food offered during these events. Either way, you can avoid those extra calories or save yourself some valuable downtime. Saying no is easier said than done. However, it is a habit that will instil food discipline for the long run.
3. Limit your dessert intake
There are very few people who dislike desserts. And there are others who like to check out the dessert table or menu before beginning a meal. If you belong to the latter group, here's what you should do:
- Check out the dessert menu and plan your choice.
- Avoid piling your plate with everything that's on display.
- Limit yourself to one helping if it's a dish that you love.
- Avoid tasting everything just for the sake of it.
4. Limit your portion sizes
Eating large portions of food is one of the main reasons for holiday weight gain. Those who eat in moderation tend to stick to their optimum weight almost effortlessly. Besides, holiday meals are typically loaded with carbs and calories rather than protein and fibre. Therefore, it is important to include protein and fibre-rich foods on the menu. This will promote fullness and help reduce the total calorie intake.
5. Gorge on water
One easy way to combat the " must eat everything in sight" syndrome is to have plenty of water before facing the food. Water quickly fills your stomach and temporarily satiates your hunger pangs that tend to go askew when you encounter a well-laden table of food. Drinking water is one of the easiest habits to implement. So, set your water goal today and carry it with you into the holidays.
6. Stave away liquid calories
Guzzling calorie-rich liquids during the holidays is considered a " cool" thing to do. The liquids on this list include:
- Fizzy drinks
- Sugar-rich fruit juices
- Energy drinks
These drinks are loaded with sugar and empty calories, which can significantly increase your weight. Also, did you know that alcohol consumption can adversely affect your appetite? Alcohol can make you gain weight in four ways. It:
- Stops your body from burning fat.
- Makes you feel hungry
- High in kilojoules
- Leads to poor food choices
The best way to stay hydrated during the holidays is to have plenty of water or opt for healthier choices like tender coconut water and fresh fruit juices without added sugar.
6. Never arrive hungry
Never attend a party or family gathering when you are hungry. Extreme hunger will jeopardize all your plans to limit food consumption. To maintain discipline in the face of temptation, plan well ahead. Have a nutritious snack or a bowl of salad. Or, like we've already mentioned, fill your stomach with water before filling your plate with food.
7. Avoid mindless "snackcidents"
Snacking is one of the favourite ways to kill time during the holidays, especially if you have your family and friends around. There is no time or place for snacking. People tend to grab a bowl of popcorn or chips while watching TV or simply snacking on something in between meals. Snacking itself is not a sin. It is more about what you snack on that leads to weight gain. Avoid snacks rich in oil, salt, and sugar. Go for fruits, nuts and seeds if you snack in between meals.
8. Get adequate sleep
Your holidays are no reason to jeopardize your sleep schedule. If you do not have a proper sleep routine, it's time to create one now. Practice a bedtime routine to put you in the right headspace. You can:
- Brush your teeth
- Practice night skincare routine
- Read a book
- Watch a bit of TV
- Practice yoga stretches
Make any or all of these your night-time ritual. It will help your body wind down and lull you into a deep sleep. Remember that staying awake for long hours will make you hungry. That is when " snackcidents" happen. Additionally, inadequate sleep lowers your metabolism because it disturbs your circadian rhythm.
9. Keep on moving
A holiday is no reason to skip your physical routine. If you aim to maintain weight during this period, the cardinal rule is to stick to your fitness schedule. Whether it is yoga, Zumba, pilates, cardio, or just a brisk walk, get it done. It will give you that much-needed energy to tackle the things on your holiday "to-do" list. And you won't be left feeling guilty for not working out.
Don't Blame The Holidays!
Holiday weight gain is common but not inevitable. A bit of self-monitoring, self-discipline, and mindful actions can help you enjoy your holidays without the guilt of weight gain. If you are diligent, you may actually end up losing weight and making the holiday a memory for a lifetime! So, enjoy your holidays and stop worrying about weight gain. You know what to do!