How to avoid weight gain during the holidays?

The holiday season is fast approaching. Christmas, New Year… you can already see the kilos of food and alcohol on the table… and then, they’re on your scales! Don’t fret, December does not rhyme with overweight. Here are a few tips on how to avoid the traditional “post-holiday slimming diet”. Rest assured, you can still enjoy your family meals.

1. Weight gain: don’t think about it!

Doesn’t it sound silly? But don’t underestimate the power our thoughts have on our bodies. So stop getting worked up about it, on the contrary, look forward to sharing and enjoying great family moments. First comes first: clear your mind of unnecessary concerns; just because you put on 2 or 3 kilos in previous years it does not necessarily mean that this one has to be the same!

Put the scales to one side for a while and instead, spend your holiday season with joy and good humour, resuming a balanced diet in the New Year and weighing yourself only in the middle of January when water retention will have disappeared. How much do you want to bet that with this piece of advice, you will not put on a gram?

2. Look for a balanced diet

I can’t say it enough, balance is the key. This key is not universal, and everyone has their own dietary balance, but it has the same name for everyone, provided that each one appropriates it in their own way.

Rich in fat, sugar, and alcohol, festive meals are often plentiful but there is no way you are going to miss out on your favourite dish. It is all just a question of dosage. To start with, use a size of plate adopted to “mindful eating”  (by snacking here and there, you just don’t really realise how much you eat…). Don’t start thinking about your smoked salmon  ages before it is served so you are already drooling before the meal. By all means have it, but just a small piece, next to the foie gras, and accompanied by a reasonable sized slice of bread. Do the same for the desserts; if you crave several, take a small piece of each, rather than limiting yourself to the one that seems the least calorific and then cracking for the one that made your eyes water in the first place. Basically, the idea is to consume everything that pleases you, but in small quantities, so you enjoy your food without hurting your poor little stomach which had, in reality, asked for nothing!

3. Hunger, satiety: listen to your feelings

In addition to being hearty, end of year meals are often very long. We chat, we nibble here and there, without necessarily listening to what our stomach tells us. And yet to avoid eating more than you need, you should perhaps pay a little more attention to what your stomach says! Take the time to chew slowly, enjoy your meal, and stop when you are no longer hungry. In this way, you will avoid this unpleasant feeling of “too full”, and you will only provide your body with what it really needs.

4. Hydration and weight gain

As you know, hydration is essential for the proper functioning of your body, since 60% of our body is made up of water.

But there is hydration and hydration. Indeed, just because you drink alcohol and it is liquid it doesn’t mean you are hydrating yourself! On the contrary. Be sure, between two glasses of champagne, not to forget the glass of water. Water helps eliminate waste, which plays an even more important role during the holidays when alcohol and rich foods are plentiful.

5. Avoid gaining weight through physical activity

Unsurprisingly, the second string to my bow after talking about food is physical activity. I know it’s cold, it maybe actually be freezing, the tip of your nose may even be red, but don’t be put off; put on two pairs of socks, your favourite pantyhose and a thick jacket and go and get some fresh air and stretch your legs! At this time of year, we tend to sit for hours at the dining table without even stepping outside which obviously does nothing to help our digestion ! So there’s nothing better than a good walk after a good meal. By expending a little energy, you balance your energy supplies and that’s all great for avoiding weight gain.

6. Be patient !

There’s no need to weigh yourself on the morning of December 26th and get yourself into a panic, proclaiming loud and clear: “right, vegetable soup until further notice!”

Just go back to your usual balanced menus, drink lots of water or hot drinks like herbal teas, and wait 1 to 2 weeks to take stock.

If you still think that this time of year will be difficult to manage on your own, why not come and see one of our qualified dietician-nutritionists for our Balance program ? They will help you find the right balance in your diet, giving you peace of mind and a certain sense of serenity during the holiday season. Because now is the time to take things in hand, you will soon see how, once accompanied by a qualified a nutritional coach, you will get so much more from all grand events because you will finally have found a balanced diet!

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