5 Tips Avoid Holiday Pounds!

by Steven Carney on November 21, 2012

In honor of Thanksgiving and the holiday season, I decided to offer some easy tips to avoid those extra holiday pounds. I’ve followed these approaches for years and they work great!

1. Appetizers

Go for more unprocessed foods like nuts, olives, cut veggies (minimize dips), guacamole and proteins like chicken or shrimp, with a few slices of cheese. Skip crackers, chips, breads or foods in fried or baked wrappers as the carbs will spike your blood glucose, adding to weight gain. Many pre-packaged foods and snacks also have extra salt, trans fats, sugar, preservatives and additives which can interfere with digestion.

2. Drinks

Hydrate as you go. Keep a glass of water handy or alternate each drink of alcohol with a glass of water (for mixed drinks, you add water as you go before your next drink). The goal is to drink an equal amount of water for each drink you have. Sip your drinks and eat as you go to slow the rate of alcohol absorption. Red wine and beer are some good choices (aim for 1 or 2 drinks total) and go easy on mixed drinks with soda. Have a small sample glass of egg nog if you want.

3. Main meals

Focus on lean proteins and lots of veggies to fill your plate, especially with simple sauces like olive oil or light butter sauce. Watch things like green bean casserole and fried onions! For white carbs like mashed potatoes or bread dressing, have small servings, about ½ a serving spoon (wild and brown rice are a good alternative to white carbs). Hold off on rolls or bread (do you really need those today?). Use a touch of gravy rather than drowning your food in it (it’s often thickened with refined flours/starches).

By having only small portions/tastes of white starches, you can participate in the meal and not offend the host. Sweet potatoes or yams are okay in a modest portions, but be careful of the sugary glazes and marshmallows! A small serving of cranberries is okay (aim for a few tablespoons).

4. Desserts

Go for sample sizes of pumpkin, fruit, or pecan pie (½ slice or less) with a dab of toping. By using a sampling approach, you can enjoy a mix of flavors while you have the equivalent of one normal slice. Again, you can participate and sample and taste everything but avoid excess weight gain!

5. Extra multivitamin

Before you go out, take an extra multivitamin. That will help supply extra vitamins and minerals for the sweats, carbs and any alcohol you drink, keeping you out of deficits (you need vitamins and minerals to digest sweets and refined carbs properly).

The overall approach is to focus on whole foods and lean proteins with veggies, nuts, olives, etc. Keep the carbs and sweets to small, sample sizes and you will avoid those extra pounds. The hydration will also keep you fuller so you’re be less prone to overeat.

And if you gain just a pound from this approach, you should lose it easily in a day or two as your body returns to its normal patterns! So you can enjoy this special holiday and those to follow with good food, family and friends!

Drop me a line if you have any questions, and let me know how things worked for you! Were you able to hold your weight pretty steady?


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© 2012 by Steve Carney/End Sickness Now

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