Ways to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

Thanksgiving dinner table with turkey, gravy, stuffing, and potatoesVarious studies have shown that we typically gain one to two pounds over the holiday season. These numbers may not seem like much, but over a five-year span, the holidays can contribute five to ten pounds of permanent weight gain.

While it’s understandable that most people don’t follow strict diet regimens in November and December, there are some simple things that can be done to avoid gaining weight over the holidays. However, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why many people gain weight to help understand this occurrence.

Reasons for Weight Gain Over the Holidays

Your Schedule Lightens Up

Throughout the year, most people are bombarded with working and caring for their families. Around Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s, three- or four-day weekends become common, encouraging a less active lifestyle and an overindulgence in eating.

You’re Stressed

While the holiday season typically presents some very fun and exciting times, the days leading up to the festive events can be stressful. Stress often causes people to “let loose” and eat more comfort foods than they usually do.

Endless Food Is Available

From little snacks like cheese and crackers to the main courses (turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes), the food options and quantities are almost endless. With the wide variety of food just an arm’s length away, consuming more food is nearly inevitable.

The Weather Is Colder

The cooler weather in the fall and winter seasons forces you to wear more layers of clothing. This allows you to cover certain parts of your body that you are unhappy with, making you feel less guilty about overeating.

Now that you know the common reasons why weight is usually gained during the holidays, here are some tips for avoiding it.

Use Smaller Plates

This one’s simple: smaller plates = less food.

Eat Plenty of Fiber

Fiber-rich foods are not only filling, but they digest slower than foods that are higher in fats and carbohydrates. Try to eat plenty of fiber-rich fruits and vegetables with each holiday meal.

Give Yourself Time to Feel Full

Before heading back to the table for a second helping of food, give your body at least 15 minutes for your food to digest.

Limit Alcoholic Beverages

Aside from the added calories that cocktails, beer, and wine add to your diet, they can also cause you to lose your inhibitions and eat irresponsibly.

We hope you have a safe and wonderful holiday season. For all of your cosmetic surgical procedures and treatments, please contact Mesbahi Plastic Surgery by calling (703) 287-8277 or filling out our online contact form. Dr. Mesbahi and his caring staff look forward to seeing you soon!