6 rules for keeping thin through the holidays

It’s that time of year – Halloween is officially over and we start stressing about the holidays. How are we going to get all of the shopping done? The recipes perfected? Make it through the parties without gaining weight?

Fear not, there is a solution! Plan NOW to get a head start on the holidays, and you’ll have a better chance of stopping the weight gain before it gets out of control.

No one wants to start the new year already feeling “behind” or “off track,” but unfortunately that’s common. So get your head into your health now. Start today, forming habits that will stick, so you follow them through the holidays and beyond.

  1. Set your ground rules. Make them achievable, but challenging. Give yourself limits, and remember that you CAN rise to the bar you set for yourself. Write these ground rules down in multiple places, including on the refrigerator, cabinet doors, your desk at work, etc.
  2. Give yourself time off.  Do this every week, but don’t necessarily make it about a “cheat meal.” Maybe it’s a spa treatment, time to catch up on that pile of magazines, a relaxing  bath or a glass of wine.
  3. If you choose to indulge, don’t feel guilty. Enjoy every bite, and realize that you can stop after the experience and move forward.
  4. Think about every meal. Even if it’s a sandwich at a sub shop, make the best choice you can, and realize that every choice matters. Each one either moves you forward or backward and, when added up, will make a difference in your overall health.
  5. Eat regular meals. If you have plans in the evening, eat smaller, healthy portions at regular intervals throughout the day. This will help you avoid over doing it at parties and celebrations.
  6. Record your successes. You’ve earned it!

Re-train your brain and belly to feel satisfied with healthier foods, versus wiring them to want more and more candy and sweets (even after the Halloween bucket is gone). Above all else, fitness and nutrition aside, remember that the holidays are about enjoyment and celebration. Making yourself miserable in the process is a waste of your energy.

So make time for yourself and don’t feel bad about it. Be positive and believe in the season of giving – this alone will help you deal with the stress of the season!

Satisfy a pumpkin craving with this great snack:

  • ½ cup 1-2% cottage cheese
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

Mix together for a delicious pumpkin experience. Approximate nutrition facts:  95 calories, 13 grams protein, 5 grams carbohydrate