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This Month In Diet
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  • Leave the Cookies for Santa
    Holiday weight gain doesn’t have to be inevitable. Take advantage of these simple ways to stay fit and trim while still enjoying the season. Read >>
Health and Fitness News

Leave the Cookies for Santa

(And seven other suggestions to avoid holiday weight gain.)

Did you know the average adult gains one pound during every holiday season? You may wonder what the big deal is about one pound. It’s just a pound, right? The problem with that one pound is that it’s rarely lost. Over the years, those pounds add up. That’s why you weigh 20 pounds more than you did in high school.

The good news is that holiday weight gain doesn’t have to be inevitable. Holiday cookies, candies, sausage balls, stuffing, candied sweet potatoes, eggnog, and cocktails don’t have to ruin your waistline. Take advantage of these simple ways to stay fit and trim while still enjoying the season.

Limit Portion Sizes

At holiday gatherings it's easy to pile your plate until it’s overflowing with delicious foods. Being mindful of portion sizes is one of the best ways to cut back on calories. Trick your mind into thinking you’re eating a big meal by using a smaller plate. Don’t worry, you can still sample each yummy dish.

Be Picky

Everywhere you turn there are sweets to be had: school parties, pageant receptions, family gatherings, and work parties. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, you know how hard it is to resist. Instead of making all sweets off limits, allow yourself an occasional small indulgence of your favorite holiday treats. Just be picky. They can’t all be favorites, so don’t waste your indulgence on fruit cake when you really love peanut brittle.

Move More

The holidays are a busy time of year. Busy times cause some people to cut exercise from their list of priorities. Not you. Because you know that high-calorie food combined with a sedentary lifestyle is a proven recipe for weight gain. Keep exercise a priority, no matter what time of year it is. You know you’ll consume a few extra calories during the holidays so counteract their effects with extra exercise. When the family and friends are gathered, go for a walk or hike together or wake up a few minutes early in the morning to fit in a workout.

Cut Back on Alcohol

What’s a holiday party without a little bubbly? Unfortunately, many alcoholic beverages are high in calories. They also increase your appetite. When everyone else around you is drinking, it can be hard not to join in. Allow yourself one low-calorie drink, and take your time with it. Liquor is lower in calories than beer and wine, but skip cocktails made with added juice or syrup.

Stay Mindful

It’s easy to overeat when there are distractions. A room full of people, the television on nonstop, and a stressful day make it more likely that you’ll overeat. The remedy? Be mindful while you eat so you can recognize your body’s signs of fullness. Slow down, chew slowly, enjoy each bite, and turn off all screens.

Focus on Health

When everyone is supposed to bring a dish to share at a party or meal, bring something that’s healthy but still a crowd-pleaser. That way you know there will be food you can enjoy without feeling guilty. Instead of bringing a high-calorie appetizer, bring a veggie tray with hummus, marinated shrimp, or whole-grain chips with salsa.

Manage Stress Levels

The holidays can be stressful. Long to-do lists, family gatherings, and a busy schedule are sure to raise anyone’s stress level. Many people turn to food as a way to cope with stress. Your body also produces cortisol in response to stress, which, over time can lead to weight gain, especially around your middle. Learn to manage stress in healthy ways. Get regular exercise, take time to relax, and practice deep breathing. This way, you’ll enjoy the holidays and let someone else put on the extra pounds.

About Training with Mr. America
About my programs: Mr. America Jason Kozma's Personal Training is a triple threat of body shaping weight workouts, precision fat-loss cardio and holistic nutrition using regular foods. Using his system, you can radically upgrade your fitness, health appearance and self-confidence. Clients routinely shed 20 pounds of body fat in eight weeks or less, increase their strength and flexibility, and achieve extreme cardiovascular fitness.

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