Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips

Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips

Woman Overeating

Although there is disagreement about the actual numbers, it is believed that the average weight gain between Halloween and the new year is 6-12 pounds!

To avoid reaching New Year’s Day feeling upset and disappointed with yourself that once again you ate your way through the holidays, here are some tips:

  1. Practice mindfulness. When approaching the table laden with food, be conscious of your choices. Survey the whole table first before beginning to load your plate.        Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips
  2. Never arrive hungry. Some folks eat lightly all day because they’re going to a party, and this always results in overeating.
  3. When choosing to eat something “fattening,” make it a conscious choice. When you eat it feeling guilty you’ll metabolize it differently than when eating it with enjoyment and focus. Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips
  4. Focus on people rather than the food. Find people you like to be with or want to learn more about instead of hanging out near the food table.
  5. Ask for and give hugs. They fill you in a very different way than the food! Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips
  6. Go easy on the booze. Over-indulging on alcohol often leads to overeating, too!
  7. Whether you eat high calorie or low calorie food doesn’t determine your moral character. You are not bad because you ate too much. Learn self-forgiveness rather than “I blew it so I might as well keep eating.”
  8. If attending a potluck, bring a healthy dish that you like to ensure that there is something to eat that you’ll find healthy and enjoyable. Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips
  9. Listen for your “I don’t care” or “it doesn’t matter” voice that will tell you it’s okay to keep eating and eating. When you are conscious of that voice, you can lightly say to it, “Thanks for your input. Now sit down and shut up,” as you move yourself away from the food.
  10. Find some fun activities to include in the holidays that don't revolve around food … and maybe the activities will even include movement! Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips

Hope you are enjoying the holiday season!

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P. S. Stop Eating Your Heart Out: The 21-Day Program to Free Yourself from Emotional Eating makes a wonderful holiday gift! Purchase your personally signed copy here.

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Preventing Holiday Weight Gain: 10 Tips — 14 Comments

  1. I really relate to the "ask for and give hugs" piece. I know that when my "skin hunger" needs are not being met, I have a tendency to feed that hunger with food… a pattern I developed at a young age. I need to allow that younger self to grow up to my adult age.

  2. Excellent tips! I have recently been actively losing weight (about 38 pounds so far) so your tips are so timely! Thanks!

  3. Thanks for the tips, they are very good in this season of the year. Liked all of them, but think that number 2 is extremely important, going to a place when we are not hungry can avoid a lot of guilt!

  4. Great tips. I like the first tip: be mindful. This helps year round. As long as I am mindful of what I'm eating, I do so much better!

  5. Great tips! I used to go to a party hungry because I knew that there would be a ton of great tasting food. But your right combine hunger with a glass of wine and I was totally overeating.

  6. I always relate such a lot to yours posts Meryl. Great advice and I'm glad I read this in particular. 'When you eat it feeling guilty you’ll metabolize it differently than when eating it with enjoyment and focus.' Good to know!

  7. I love these tips, Meryl. I especially love that many of them are not even about food! I'll keep this list for my holiday eating. Thanks!

  8. I don't know, Meryl. As powerful and complete as this list is … what's going to be left for our list of New Year's resolutions? 😉

  9. I'll have to watch myself over the holidays. So much good food to choose from but it sure can lead to inching the belt out. Thanks for the great tips.

  10. GREAT tips, Meryl! As someone who grappled with Bulimia for 11 years back in my late teens/early 20s at a time when eating disorders were barely recognized, let alone effectively treated, I think your tips are excellent and should help so many people – not only through the holidays – but with day-to-day eating, as well.

  11. This article is so timely. Love your tip #2: Never arrive hungry – this applies not just for this holiday season but for all occasions. This would prevent me from feeling guilty afterwards.

  12. All great tips Meryl. Don't forget protein! Without plenty of protein our brains are triggered to want sugar and starch. How about a handful of nuts before the party? Starting out your day with eggs and veggies can help too. Grass fed beef can make holiday meals special while keeping us warm and sated. Protein also keeps our metabolisms going strong.