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Eating Right During the Holidays Starts Today

November 2, 2009

Let’s start with a sobering statistic:  the average person gains 7 lbs. of fat during the holidays. (I’m not making this stuff up people!)  Eating right during the holidays is possible, despite what you may think. Amidst thoughts of holidayweightgain-main_FullThanksgiving feasts, Christmas parties, egg nog, Christmas parties, candy canes, and Christmas parties there is hope. Oh yeah, fruit cakes too.  Allow me to explain.
Eating during the holidays should be no different than how you eat today.  But it is different, right?  What you can anticipate is a little more temptation than normal because those around you will give in to those tasty temptations.  Those sneaky trips to the office lounge for a handful of Chex Mix or frosted pretzels add up!
Somehow during history we have stored good times in our brain with eating – and sometimes overeating (or even drinking!). Of course that does not have to be the answer. The solution to this precarious challenge lies with one simple word: PREPARATION.

PREPARATION

Let’s assume you’re already involved in a great exercise program like P90X or you work out at the gym, so let’s talk nutritional preparation here.  Preparation allows you time to put together your strategy for a healthy lifestyle, a definite need for everyone, especially during the holidays. It allows you to formulate a plan. Or Plan B. Or Plan C.  Preparation for the holidays starts quickly after Halloween. You know where this is going, don’t you? Yep, that candy left over – what will you do with it? Answer: throw it out onto your porch, take it out to the trash, but definitely get it OUT of your sight. Temptation is lessened by the removal of the offending object.  I hope this post finds you in time before it’s too late?  (Wipe that Snickers moustache off before someone sees you.)
As Thanksgiving approaches, football season kicks in. Football season is the “Great Deceiver” since many do not see it as part of their holiday plans until New Years and the various Bowl games. But it’s there.
If you are prone to snacking during such times, as well as enjoying a few brews, then know this: overeatingconsuming alcohol not only adds calories to your “bottom line,” but it can cause you to over consume food at the same time. Traditional beers can have up to 200 calories or more. The more you drink the more calories you consume, not to mention the Off switch you forget to hit as your impaired judgment kicks in.  Before you know it, those chicken fingers are gone followed by a Nacho chaser.  Did you know some appetizers or finger foods you consume at sports bars can be as much as 2,500 calories – like chicken wings?  Say it isn’t so.  But it is.
There are healthy alternatives to snacking during a football game or other events during the holidays.  Those snacks include salsa and baked chips, pistachio nuts, lite popcorn, or a meal replacement shake.  The guys may look at you funny for eating healthier or passing up a six-pack, but the ladies will be looking at you later on as you sport a six-pack of the abdominal variety.

I can already hear the naysayers out there.  Can you hear them?  “C’mon dude, live a little!  Loosen up and enjoy life for a change!”  I don’t totally disagree – you should be allowed to enjoy life.  Or eating foods you really want – but only once in a while.  If the option of eating whatever we want is such a great idea, then why are healthcare costs at an all-time high along with the incidence of diabetes and heart disease? Allow the reward or luxury of an occasional splurge, but please wait UNTIL you have hit your goals and you have a better handle on what goes into your mouth.  Then you will be a better judge of what is right for you.

As an Independent Team BeachBody Coach, I’m here to help, free of charge.  Exercise and eating right are the first steps, but questions will arise – so please use me as a resource for those answers.

In the next post I will discuss more steps you can take now to fully prepare for the inevitable holiday eating season and avoid the holiday gut.  Til then, what are some snacks you enjoy that keep the weight at bay?

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