By: Karen Yontz Center Staff
The holiday season is upon us and with it, plenty of opportunities to indulge. According to recent studies, the average American gains about 1.3 pounds between October and January. While this may not seem like a lot, over the years, it can add up quickly. How can you make sure you don’t end up carrying around extra weight in the New Year? We have 8 great tips to keep those pesky pounds off.
- Be a picky eater: Don’t eat food just because it’s there. Take time to check out all of the options on the holiday buffet or the Thanksgiving table and decide what you REALLY want. Then have a small portion of each.
- Don’t bank your calories: If you know you have a party or other event coming up, don’t starve yourself all day. Make sure to eat a healthy breakfast and lunch—something that has both protein and fiber to fill you up. This way you don’t run the risk of bingeing later.
- Work in a workout: Only have 10 minutes between when you get home and when you need to start getting ready for that party? Bust out the jump rope, do some burpees, or do a short yoga sequence. Every little bit of exercise helps keep your body burning calories.
- Get some potassium into your meal: Many appetizers and party foods have a lot of sodium in them. Foods naturally rich in potassium help to counteract sodium and its effects, and they are usually able to be found on a holiday buffet. Some great examples of these are bananas, kiwis, strawberries, and cantaloupe.
- Serve plated food: Take a cue from your favorite restaurants and put guests’ food on the plate and serve rather than putting platters and bowls of food on the table. Keeping the extra food in the kitchen forces you to think about if you really need seconds and gives your stomach time to digest and feel full.
- Choose a long, thin glass for your drinks: Believe it or not, studies have shown that people drink less when drinking from a long, thin glass even though they hold a similar amount of liquid as a short, wide vessel whether the drink is alcoholic or not.
- Keep your sleep as regular as possible: The holidays tend to mean a lot of running around and stress which can make sleep schedules go out the window. Sleepy people tend to make poor food choices. Keeping your sleep schedule as normal as it is during the rest of the year means it will be easier to keep yourself away from overly sugared, high-fat treats.
- Make yourself accountable: Sometimes the best thing you can do is to put your money where your mouth is. Visit the Karen Yontz Center between November 12 and November 21 to participate in our 3rd annual Maintain Don’t Gain Challenge. Participants pay $10 and weigh in on those dates and return in January for a reweigh. Those who gain 0.6 pounds or more forfeit their $10 into a kitty. Those who maintain their weight within 0.5 pounds or lose weight will get their $10 back PLUS a portion of the kitty from those who didn’t maintain. It’s a popular challenge and many participants have actually lost weight simply by knowing they were coming back for a reweigh. Contact the center at (414) 649-5767 for more information.