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24 Nov 2020 2:04 PM | Maria Allshouse

The holiday season is upon us!! On average, the typical American gains 4-6 lbs over the holiday season. This is WITHOUT a global pandemic (which, by the way, 76% of American adults have already gained 16 or more pounds during the pandemic) happening that has many isolating and stuck in their homes. Below are several tips for this Thanksgiving and into the holiday season:

1) Cook at home more. Studies have found ordering meals out have us eating 250-400 more calories than if we cooked at home.

2) Increase your NEAT: "Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis." The things you do daily outside of your planned activity are what makes a difference! Take the stairs, park the car further away in the parking lot, go for walks, you get the picture.

3) Thanksgiving Day: PLAN ahead. If you are watching your weight, decide what you'd like the outcome of the day to be: one in which you feel bloated and stuffed or one in which you feel satisfied and happy with good choices. That choice alone can set the stage for the rest of the weekend in terms of eating.

It takes very little time to eat a meal. Remember a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips!  Is it worth overdoing it?

4) The flavor of any food is found and most pronounced in the FIRST THREE BITES (Research Fact). Keep those desserts and heavy side dishes to three bites or a sliver.

5) Speaking of heavy side dishes: try some healthier versions of favorite dishes. Just because it's better for you does not mean it can't taste great! Start new traditions

6) Fill your plate, first, with the turkey (or whatever protein you are having), vegetables/salads. Again, give little space to those heavy side dishes. 

7) Look at your options. What is it that you only have once a year on Thanksgiving? Choose to have small bites and skip maybe some of the things you can get any time (i.e. mash potatoes, etc.)

8) Drink plenty of water throughout the day.

9) Get some accountability. If you are working on releasing weight, ask for support from family and friends.

10) Be sure to get plenty of good quality sleep. Being tired has been closely tied to weight gain (eating highly processed carbs for quick energy).

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Make this a happy and healthy holiday season!

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