How not to gain weight over the Holidays!

Why is it that whenever we think of holidays we somehow associated it with food! Be it Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year, not to mention personal celebrations like birthdays, mother's day, father's day etc… food always seems to be involved! For those who are trying to lose weight or maintain their weight these can be tricky times of the year. Although the sad fact is that the majority of people will overeat during the holidays, it is possible not to gain weight and still enjoy yourself. All it takes is some pre-planning and a bit of self control!

Girls at partyEven though there are many festive holidays throughout the year, the most indulgent still seems to be the Christmas/New Year period. This is a time when we often attend numerous functions and family events where our favorite occupation tends to be stuffing food and drink into your mouth! And after it's all over – we make a New Years resolution to lose the weight we just added to our midsections!

So what is a smart thing to do to avoid the holiday spread? Well, if you are really serious about not falling into that trap this year, then why not lose weight in anticipation of the extra calories you will be consuming? I know this sounds ambitious, but it is actually a great tactic to pre-lose rather than post-lose the weight.

You still have a few months up your sleeve so you don't need to embark on some stringent diet and exercise routine – all you need to do is start making some small changes to kick start your weight loss. Have a read of my dieting 101 tips, which will definitely get the ball rolling. 

If you don't feel disciplined enough to try the pre-holiday lose, then there are still many other things you can do to avoid weight gain. Here are a list of 10 Holiday Diet Tips:

1. Increase the amount or intensity of your exercise over the holiday period so that you compensate for the extra calories. 

2. Watch your portion control, eat off a smaller plate where ever possible and don't go back for second helpings!

3. Make smarter choices about what you eat, avoid creamy sauces and gravies, go for the leaner cuts of meat and fill up on vegetables and salad rather than the carbohydrate and fat laden options.

4. Allow yourself one type of dessert, not a bit of each – as this will likely mount up to a lot more than you were planning to eat.

5. Pre-plan what you are going to eat wherever possible. Find out what's on the menu and make a conscious decision of what you will have before you even get there. If you can bring a plate then make sure it has plenty of low calorie options so that you can nibble on those instead of indulging in the higher calorie ones the host provides. 

6. Limit sugary drinks and alcohol, they just add a whole lot of empty calories. If it is byo then bring some diet soft drink or mix your alcohol with soda water and lemon instead of sugary mixers.

7. Avoid mindless eating! There will likely be a lot of snack foods present, don't just pick up hand fulls of nuts and mindlessly pop them into your mouth. Keep a constant check on what you are consuming. Just keep reminding yourself that the main meal is just around the corner.

8. Wear tight clothing! You won't be able to eat as much before you feel quite uncomfortable!

9. Get someone to keep you accountable. Make a pact with another friend or family member who wants to avoid weight gain and hold each other to the plan!

10. If you can bring a plate then make sure it has plenty of low calorie options so that you can nibble on those instead of indulging in the higher calorie ones the host provides. 

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