Lose Holiday Weight…

The holiday break is a curse and a blessing. You spend quality family time, have a vacation from work….and eat and drink too much. Most of us start avoiding our scales or that tighter top because we know we’ve packed on a few pounds but don’t really want to know how much, and usually make radical New Year’s resolutions about losing said weight. However, instead of saying that you will work out 3 hours a day or doing a crash diet, there are a few healthy diet and lifestyle changes that can help you lose the holiday weight and keep it off.

  1. Stay hydrated!

Most people don’t drink enough water. This is bad for your body, and can also make you eat more! People who haven’t had enough water often feel hungrier, because part of our water comes from the food we eat. Try drinking 13 glasses of water a day (for men) and 9 (for women). Before eating a meal, have a glass of water. It will help hydrate you and also helps fill your stomach.

  1. Add unsweetened cranberry juice and lemon to your water.

The unsweetened cranberry juice (not cranberry cocktail) and lemon are cleansing agents and can improve liver function. And you must admit that you liver probably deserves a break after the holidays. Detoxing your body will help drop excess water weight and improve body function and energy overall, and can make drinking that water less boring.

  1. Use a small plate for meals.

This helps reduce portion size and an easy way to manage the quantity of food that you eat, as long as you don’t go back for seconds and thirds! Also remember that it takes the stomach awhile to communicate to the brain that it is full, so eat your smaller portion more slowly to avoid overeating.

  1. Be that person who DOES exercise regularly.

Everyone has good intentions when they get that gym membership, but it is important to actually be active at least 3-4 times a week. Whether you do a brisk morning walk, or an evening gym run on the way home from work, make sure that somehow you are staying active. If you can’t make it to the gym, go for a walk or lift some weights at home. Even a little exercise every day can go a long way.

  1. Keep consistent meal times.

Remembering to eat meals is important. Skipping does not help lose weight, and it is important to plan your meals so that you don’t end up binging. Breakfast is important to jump start your metabolism, even if you have a piece of wholegrain toast. Not eating dinner late is also key to make sure all food is properly digested before sleeping.

  1. Make small diet changes.

You don’t have to eat just veggies and drink only water, but do make some healthy decisions about what you eat. Eat whole grains, not processed, bleached flours. Have a salad or green vegetables for a meal (make sure you don’t smother this in high calorie toppings), and always have a little protein.

Losing weight is difficult, but taking a slower, measured approach is more likely to be effective. Crash diets usually only work for a short time, and the weight doesn’t stay off. These suggestions can be lifestyle changes that help you lose holiday weight, keep it off and stay fit afterward.