Are You Fearful of Holiday Weight Gain?

It’s rare that I don’t speak with someone this time of year who isn’t fearful of holiday weight gain.  You can almost see the angst in their eyes, waiting on the secret that will allow them to enjoy ALL OF THE FOOD without the added fluff.


The fact is, that holiday weight gain is exaggerated. In fact very few people gain as much as five pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year’s according to WebMD.  Where the problem lies is in the after effects of the holidays.  That one or 2 pound weight gain is the real problem child.  Like a bad behavior that is not addressed, the holiday weight gain can and will carry forward year after year.

So how do you follow my advice and keep your weight in check?

  • ENJOY – Take pleasure in the moment. If you pause to be grateful for what you have, what you are about to eat and who you are with you create an experience.  So often, we rush through these times and miss out on the good stuff. How many times does someone ask you how your weekend went? Do you even remember? I often don’t. The same goes for food. Make a point to remember. How did it look, taste and smell. Who and what was surrounding you? If you take inventory I’m willing to bet you will remember and you will be filled with more than just stuffing.
  • EAT – Choose to fill your plate with what you love! This is not a time for restriction. Then again, it’s not your last supper either. Eat like you’ve been fed before and like you will be fed again. You are the one calling the shots: not the turkey, the pie or your mother-in-law. In fact, eat breakfast, have a snack and then enjoy your holiday meal.  Are you surrounded by the food all day?  Make a game of it. Set some rules up.  No eating while standing. Must have a plate in hand. Must combine two or more food groups. Must drink a glass of water between each snack.
  • HAVE FUN – It’s hard to overeat when you are taking time to laugh, engage in conversation and smile while eating. If you take the time to do this, your belly will have enough time to tell your brain to take a break. Overly full and uncomfortable are reminders that we ate too fast and did not remain mindful to the advice you were given.

Last but not least, do not keep left over’s longer than need be.  It is the season of giving! Disperse what’s left among your guests and share your health goals while you are at it. A little bit of accountability from someone who cares about you can make a world of difference.  Who knows, you might even inspire someone to maintain not gain. When in doubt throw it out.  Your waistline will thank you and at the same time you will defy the odds. No exaggeration.

Happy Thanksgiving!  EAT, ENJOY and HAVE FUN.