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How to Prevent Holiday Weight Gain

cookiesDuring the holidays, your normal routine is thrown off by attending holiday parties, finding the time to shop for gifts and last minute errands.

And, you’re constantly tempted with the scrumptious holiday treats lurking around every corner of your home and office.

According to WebMD.com, most Americans put on an extra one to two pounds by the New Year. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but researchers at the National Institutes of Health have concluded that most Americans never lose the weight they gain during the winter holidays. One or two pounds can certainly add up over time.

So, how can you prevent holiday weight gain this year? Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

Eat a sensible meal before a holiday party

Before you head out to a holiday gathering, eat a sensible meal at home. If you’re not hungry, constantly sampling the appetizers and desserts at the party will be less tempting.

Spend more time talking

You’re attending a social gathering, so use it as an opportunity to be social. Spend more time talking to friends at parties (preferably away from the food spread) and less time eating.

Don’t save up calories

If you know you have an event where you will eat well, don’t save up your calories by eating lighter during the day. This can cause you to overindulge at night because you are more hungry than usual.

Stay hydrated

Be sure to drink water throughout the day. It is recommended to drink at least 64 ounces of water per day to stay hydrated. Plus, thirst can often be confused with hunger.

Exercise early

With the growing lists of “to-dos” you have during the holidays, your daily exercise can be one of the first things you cut. Starting your day with an activity can help give you energy and motivation to make healthy decisions. Plus, you’ll have your workout completed so you won’t have to worry about squeezing in gym-time later.

Don’t taste test while baking

This is another way extra calories can sneak into your diet over the holidays. If you plan to bake goodies for your co-workers and family members, don’t taste test while you’re baking. Especially if you make several different types of treats!