I read this article in the December 2019 issue of Eating Well and wanted to share it here in hopes that it will help all of us get through the holidays without gaining weight!
The season for weight gain is upon us.
One in three American adults gain between 2 and 8 pounds over the holidays. (Unfortunately, most of us never lose it, so over the years, those little gains can snowball.)
Shedding pounds during the holidays may not be a realistic goal—but maintaining our weight can be. Here are expert approved tips to help.
Don't Miss: Best Tips for Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain
Holiday Weight Maintenance Tip #1: Weigh Yourself
The holidays can be so busy, that come January 2, it might seem like the pounds piled on overnight. Enter the bathroom scale.
University of Georgia Researchers found that women who weighed themselves daily from Thanksgiving through New Year's and tracked the number with an app, sailed through the holidays without adding an ounce.
Those who skipped stepping on the scale gained an average of 7 pounds.
While you shouldn't stress so much over a single-day difference, weighing yourself can be a huge help in spotting an upward trend over the course of several days so you can shift your habits and correct your course before it becomes a bigger deal.
Don't Miss: Easy Ways to Guesstimate Your Portions
Holiday Weight Maintenance Tip #2: Start with a Sliver
Which do you think you'd eat more of: a single brownie or the same portion cut into four smaller pieces?
A new study published in Appetite says you're more likely to eat more with the whole brownie. People who were given a single large treat generally ate 80% of it.
However, when offered the same dessert divvied up into smaller portions, they only ate 65%.
Our brains a better able to accurately estimate portions by the number of units than by size. So, it's easier to judge how much food you're eating in four smaller brownies than in one quadruple-size dessert.
If you find you're satisfied after the first bite-size treat practicing moderation is as simple as skipping seconds.
My grandmother was the queen of using the the "just a sliver" of sweets technique to stay slim.
Holiday Weight Maintenance Tip #3: Compensate the Next Day
Science shows that people are more likely to chow down when there are lots of foods to choose from, loud music, fewer vegetables and less ability to serve themselves. Sounds a lot like your typical holiday party, doesn't it?
Knowing this, you may be tempted to cut back by eating smaller meals before the event. But this can backfire because if you arrive ravenous, you're almost guaranteed to overeat.
Try this dietician approved approach instead—before the party, focus on meals that contain plenty of filling fiber and protein and eat slightly smaller, regular meals the next day.
Why? First you'll go into the event satisfied and less tempted to splurge.
And second, if you do indulge, you can even things out afterward and won't miss shaving off a few calories the next day. Just don't cut back too much or you're apt to overeat all over again.
You Might Also Like:
- 45 Reasons French Women Don't Get Fat
- 3 Reasons Smart People Struggle with Weight Loss
- Mindless Eating
Source: December 2019 issue of Eating Well
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