The holiday season is the time of the year when people celebrate the values that bring happiness and meaning to life. It is also a perfect time to rest and enjoy the festivities with family and friends. Every family has their way of celebrating the holidays. However, one of the common denominators for all families when celebrating is food. And a lot of food. Not to mention the endless office parties with all kinds of food and alcohol.
Most people would think that the holidays are supposed to be a time for carefree joy, couch time, binge eating, and vacation days. But let’s face it, oftentimes, the holidays bring in a lot more bad choices. Whether that is “just a piece of cake” that turns into three slices or “I will not drink anymore” drama after five tequila shots and three martinis. Who can’t say no to free food and booze, right?
Did you know that studies show that on average, people do gain weight during the holidays? Weight gain is extremely common from late November to early January. Imagine from Thanksgiving to the New Year, sugary desserts, fatty foods and alcohol all lined up on your plate not to mention the huge portions for everything. If you think you are overeating but still reach out for an extra slice of pie, you’re not alone. Chances are, everyone at the table piles more food into their plates too. And yes, there’s such a thing called “social facilitation of eating” wherein people tend to eat more when they are with a company than when they are eating alone. Hence, the family style or communal eating is popular among large groups of family of friends when eating out. However, this also entails that you will tend to eat more out of the table, particularly those fatty and sugary foods. Probably one of the worst nightmares for the people in the gyms in Seminole.
Instead of feeling bad or feeling too self-conscious about yourself during this holiday eating bonanza, you must still be able to make the right choices and decisions that will lead you to a healthier life despite a lot of temptations when it comes to food and activities during this celebration. Here are some ways you can combat holiday weight gain and make yourself even healthier during this time of unlimited turkeys and pies.
- Watch your portion sizes
When eating at a party, what do people tend to do? Get the biggest plate of all the food in there and tell yourself that it’s a cheat day. And every day for the entire month of December becomes a cheat day. One way to combat this is choosing a smaller plate, if not available, only use half of the bigger plate. Smaller portions make a big difference and also load up on more veggies and less on carbs such as pasta and rice. Also, chew your food slowly and enjoy every bite, you’ll feel more full. And the golden rule? Stay away as far as possible from the food table so you can’t be tempted to go back for more.
- Indulge in a hobby or physical activity
The holidays mean more vacation days. This means there is more time for rest and better sleep. Most people prefer sedentary activities during the holidays such as watching TV, sitting all day, and eating unhealthy junk foods. While these are all relaxing activities, they may lead to weight gain and lower physical energy. Thus, doing some type of physical activity such as hiking, swimming, skiboarding or simply walking in the park would get your mind off food and unhealthy activities. Why not ask your family and friends to do something fun for the holidays outside like camping or the beach and indulge yourself with nature? And no, sitting on a lawn or beach chair all day doesn’t count.
- Plan Ahead
Planning does not mean planning on how to hit two buffet dinners in one day. This is simply being conscious and thinking ahead about your food choices. If you know your friend Sarah is bringing her delicious pecan pie to the party, then choose to eat a less calorie-dense meal earlier in the day. This way, you can indulge in a small slice of pecan pie without adding many calories to your diet. Better yet, hit fitness centers in Seminole Fl before attending that party to burn off some of the calories and prep yourself for that little slice of heaven without the guilt.
- Get plenty of sleep
Do you notice that when you are tired and sleepy, you tend to grab something sweet or salty even though you’re not hungry? Sleep deprivation can cause an increase in the hunger hormone levels in our bodies which tends to lead to higher calorie intake. While it may be fun to stay up all night for a straight week to attend holiday parties, take the time to stay home and get enough sleep. Limit alcohol consumption when you are trying to catch up on sleep as alcohol may disrupt the release of melatonin in your brain which regulates the sleep-wake cycle of a person.
- Hit the gym
Probably one of the hardest choices for a person during the holidays is whether to go to a party or go to the gym instead. Holiday parties are fun and there’s a lot of good food and tons of alcohol. Who would say no to that, right? However, going to gyms in Seminole can be more beneficial to your body. If you’re serious about making healthier choices, choose to do hard things. And though going to the gym might be hard, remaining active even during the busiest time of the season helps you stay consistent and your body will thank you. Exercise promotes mental health and since the holidays are stressful, hitting the fitness centers in Seminole Fl can be a stress reliever and can keep your body in shape and combat weight gain.
While the holidays are the most exciting time of the year, it could also keep people from making healthier choices and opt to be lazier. Stop with the “I’ll start tomorrow” mentality and end unhealthy habits during the holidays right away. It will not only make you stronger but can also boost your happiness. Healthy body means a happier life, right?