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The holiday season is a time to celebrate with family and friends. Unfortunately, for many it also becomes a time for over-eating and weight gain. With Thanksgiving, holiday parties, and family gatherings, holiday weight gain can really add up. The holidays don’t have to mean weight gain. Focus on a healthy balance of food, activity, and fun. By implementing a few simple tips you can stay healthy through the holiday season.

  1. Be realistic. Don’t try to lose pounds during the holidays, instead, try to maintain your current weight.
  2. Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain. A moderate and daily increase in exercise can help partially offset increased holiday eating.
  3. Don’t skip meals. Before leaving for a party, eat a light snack like raw vegetables or a piece of fruit to curb your appetite. You will be less tempted to over-indulge.
  4. Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed. Savor your favorite holiday treats while eating small portions. Sit down, get comfortable, and enjoy.
  5. Be careful with beverages. Alcohol can lessen inhibitions and induce overeating; non-alcoholic beverages can be full of calories and sugar.
  6. If you overeat at one meal go light on the next. It takes 500 calories per day (or 3,500 calories per week) above your normal/maintenance consumption to gain one pound. You won’t gain weight from one piece of pie!
  7. Make good food choices. Here are a few:
    -Skip the gravy
    -Enjoy delicious, roasted turkey breast without the skin
    -Choose non-starchy veggies.

Enjoy the holidays, plan a time for activity, incorporate healthy recipes into your holiday meals, and don’t restrict yourself from enjoying your favorite holiday foods. In the long run, your mind and body will thank you.