Studies show that the average American gains one to two pounds every year during the Holiday Season. That may not sound a lot, but it’s an average and lots of people gain considerably more. If you add that gain to other opportunities to pile on the pounds, it really adds up. In a study of 195 adults (reference below) our average weight gain during the 6-week holiday season explains 51% of our entire annual weight gain! Get control of that and you have a routine that can trim you up. These Holidays, here’s how….
Pick Protein First
Before taking any other food, do a quick survey of the treats on the table and pick protein first! Deviled eggs, turkey, roasted chicken, lean ham, beans, lentils, quinoa, ... the list is long. High protein foods fill you up faster (satiety) and provide key ingredients to maintain and grow healthy muscle, not fat. Focus on protein first at the dinner table!
Don’t Go Starving
Having a healthy snack before dinner or a party reduces your cravings and that helps you make healthy decisions at the food table. You want to arrive with your blood sugar normal, not screaming for food. A few almonds or peanuts, a piece of celery with cream cheese, or an Extend Nutrition bar or shake will do the job. Control your blood sugar with a healthy snack and you’ll control your cravings at the Festivities … and every day, all year long.
Get Moving / Get Functional
We hear people talk of 10,000 steps a day for health. That’s not as many as you may think – consider all the steps you take just around the house, office, or doing normal chores. But it helps a lot to be mindful of moving around. You’ll do more of it.
And get Functional. Functional training is using your body for resistance. By learning to push and pull, hang, squat and lunge you are doing the movements your body is designed to do. You’ll lose weight, build muscle. Start with a few knee pushups, some squats, torso twists, lunges, and so on. One step at a time. Be consistent and you’ll see results in your weight and health.
Drink Lots of Water
Drink plenty of water during the day. Water helps you feel full and as a result consume fewer calories. It has lots of other benefits too.
Focus More on Socializing, Less on Food
Being together, eating great food, giving gifts, spiritual observances, sports…the Holidays are about all these and much more. It’s not just food. Focus on the whole meaning – as it is for you and yours.
Don’t stand around the food table. Have a healthy snack before you arrive (see above) and while you’re there, walk around a lot and mingle. Participate in as much as you can, especially things that move your body. Remember, conversation is calorie-free, and standing is much better than sitting. Enjoy!
Alcohol tends to pack on the pounds. (Other problems too). In addition to the high calories in alcoholic drinks, alcohol lowers your inhibitions and, believe it or not, your blood sugar. So… you eat more. Up to you, but it you decide to have a drink, keep it to two for men and one for women. Consider wine - lower calories and less alcohol. And remember – the best Holiday fun is with family and friends, whether you’re celebrating in person or virtually.
If you’re a little bit careful about the above, you can have it all this Holiday Season and beyond. You’ll feel it.
Extend bars & shakes are just what you need all Holiday Season. They’re the healthy snack you want between meals, before you head off to your parties, and to help you ease up on that next piece of pie. Moreover, since they’re designed to help control blood sugar, they’ll take the edge off your cravings allowing you to enjoy the delectable goodies without becoming a balloon. Serious clinical studies prove that eating an Extend bar or shake between or before meals results in eating over 20% fewer calories in the next meal! Delicious too (of course!). No/low sugar, no sugar added, low carbs, gluten free, only 150 calories. Blood Sugar Control with Serious Nutrition Science. That’s Extend.