It’s a great time of the year, Summer BBQ’s, Christmas Parties and end of year catch ups. Unfortunately the unwanted side effect of lots of socialising and celebrating can be weight gain.
Here’s how to enjoy the holiday season while maintaining your weight.
1. Ensure you make time for exercise
With lots on, it can be easy to let your exercise routine suffer. However, at this time of the year it’s vital to keep it up to burn off those excess calories. In fact, including extra exercise is a good idea to help maintain your weight when you know you’re going to be eating and drinking more than normal.
2. Don’t arrive to an event hungry
It inevitably leads to eating more than you need. Have an apple and glass of trim milk before you go. The fibre in the apple and protein in the milk will help keep you from feeling too hungry when you arrive.
3. Watch the alcohol
Alcohol affects weight in a number of ways. Firstly, it contains a lot of calories. 1 gram of alcohol contains 7 calories, compared to 4 calories in the food groups carbohydrates in protein. Not only is alcohol high in calories, often mixers are high sugar too, adding extra calories. Secondly, alcohol lowers your willpower and increases hunger so you’re more likely to make bad food choices and eat more than you really need. If you’ve got more than one event a week, pick one day only where you will drink alcohol, and limit to 3 drinks.
4. Eat light on the day you’re going out
If you’ve got a function, make the other meal a light one – soup or salad with protein. This will help compensate for the extra calories you’ll have at the function.
5. Enjoy but don’t over do it
Christmas and New Years is a time to enjoy yourself, so by all means eat your favourite foods, but remember portion size. Just because you’ve been given a box of chocolates, it doesn’t mean you need to eat it all in a couple of days. Share it around and make it last.