It seems to come earlier every year, and the holiday season is approaching quickly. And for many women, that means weight gain. But there are ways to avoid weight gain this holiday season.
Get some exercise
The holiday season is a busy one and usually something has to give. For many of us, that is exercise. If you find you don’t have time to do your normal workout routine, then look for alternatives. Maybe start your shopping trip with a speed walking lap around the mall, do a quick HIIT workout at home, or get up to an energizing morning yoga video. Check out this free trial of online personal training for some quick workouts you can do at home.
Stress causes weight gain and the holiday season often leads to more stress. Exercise is one way to reduce stress. You can also try some a quick breathing exercise, a short body scan, meditation or other relaxation exercise.
Get enough sleep
Menopausal women often don’t get enough sleep and that contributes to weight gain. And it only seems to get worse during the holiday season. Check out this article for ways to sleep better during menopause.
Watch the alcohol
There are many reasons to limit alcohol if you are going through menopause. Weight gain is one of them. Alcohol is calorie rich and overconsumption is often accompanied by poor food choices. Of course holiday gatherings also mean that more alcohol is usually consumed at this time.
Try alternating your alcoholic beverages with glasses of water to stay hydrated and reduce your consumption. Chose beverages that can be sipped slowly and be mindful of how much you are drinking.
Eating slowly helps you to avoid weight gain by giving you time to notice that you are already full. It also helps with digestion and even helps you to enjoy your food more. If you are attending a sit down dinner, then practice eating slowly. Put your fork down between bites, chat with the person next to you, and chew your food completely.
Limit portion size
Even if you eat slowly, you probably find that you don’t want to offend your host by not finishing what is on your plate so you force yourself to eat until you feel like a beached whale. And then your host brings out dessert…
Combat this by taking small portions, and then maybe filling your plate with lots of vegetables (preferably steamed or roasted). You can always have seconds if you find you didn’t get enough of something.
Don’t skip meals
Sometimes there is an urge to skip dinner or even other meals when you have a holiday party to attend that evening. The problem with this idea is that you are more likely to binge at the appetizer table and end up eating way more than you would have if you had had dinner instead.
Have a light, but healthy dinner before you go. Try to include protein and vegetables in your meal. A salad with some roasted chicken is a quick and easy meal.
Don’t deprive yourself
Sometimes you head into the holiday season thinking you will avoid everything “bad”. No chocolate, no cookies, no snacks, and no alcohol. Usually this works for a day or two. Then you have one cookie because your aunt made them. Does this mean your healthy eating is ruined? Many women think it does and then they feel they might as well have the whole plate.
Depriving yourself of every sweet treat, or unhealthy snack often leads to binge eating because you feel you have failed. Go ahead and have a cookie, but make sure it’s a good one so you don’t feel deprived. But limit what you have and eat it slowly and mindfully so you truly enjoy it.
You can avoid the inevitable weight gain and extra inches in the belly this holiday season. Try these healthy breakfasts to start your day right. They will help to balance your hormones so you are less likely to feel cravings the rest of the day.