I’m not sure how Thanksgiving is next week. I guess because our Halloween got skipped because of a natural disaster, I just haven’t mentally shifted to thoughts of turkey and horns-o-plenty. And that whole Halloween cancellation? Well, it didn’t exactly mean that I skipped the candy because although we didn’t have trick-or-treaters, we had bought candy in preparation. That means I have to be a little better about the upcoming holiday indulgences because I don’t think it was really necessary that I ate so many fun-size candy bars. So you don’t overindulge like I did, today, weight-loss experts Dr. Sue DeCotiis, Manhattan Medical Weight Loss Physician, and nutritionist Isabel De Los Rios, co-founder of BeyondDiet.com, provides general weight-loss tips and healthy alternatives to ensure that you look your best through the New Year.
Avoid Holiday Weight Gain With These Expert Tips
1. Know your body. Remember that it is possible to enjoy the festivities, just try to stay away from the sugar, says Dr. DeCotiis. “Remember, the shape of a piece of candy corn is the exact shape of the insulin spike that sabotages your weight-loss efforts.”
2. Avoid insulin spikes. Simple sugars that are found in candies, baked goods and alcoholic drinks spike your insulin levels. With added insulin in the bloodstream, your body reacts by storing fat. But don’t reach for the diet soda—artificial sweeteners trick the body into thinking that they are actually sugar, and once your body comes down from the spike in insulin, you’ll be hungry again. Stick with water!
3. Plan your attack. If you’re heading out to a holiday party, think about what you’re going to eat before you go. Never arrive hungry. Make sure to hydrate yourself throughout the day, drinking ample amounts of water in the afternoon and eating an apple about an hour before leaving for the event. This will be filling and also slow down the digestive process.
4. Maintain your health. Holidays are often an excuse to stop going to the gym, but if you’re going to be attending events, be mindful that you should try to fit in aerobic exercise at least three times a week. This will help to lower insulin levels and keep you looking good in your little black dress. Dr. DeCotiis recommends fish oil to her patients to balance out the toxins that go into your body during this season.
5. Look into alternatives. As far as sweets go, try to avoid the ones that contain high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated oil, says De Los Rios. Instead, opt for choices made from dark chocolate or 100-percent milk chocolate.
6. Get involved. Take the reigns yourself and host a holiday party! That way you can control the menu and keep it as healthy as possible! Since this time of the year is about family, get your children involved by creating delectable dishes that are nutritious and satisfying.
7. Be informed. Look for all-natural products, and if you’re going to a party where you know healthy food won’t be an option, bring your own! Snacking on a small handful of nuts or bringing your own vegetarian version of dinner will save time and energy by knowing what it is that you’re putting into your body.
And if you’re looking for more tips to stay on track this holiday season, consider joining us for the Fit Bottomed Girls’ free online class on this topic! It’s just an hour long, but packed with tons of info on how to stay healthy over the holidays. And did we mention it’s free? —Erin