Stay Slim and Healthy During the Winter Months
Edited by Robbi, Nerissa Avisado, Ana Balayon, Lynn and 1 other
Winter and all its holidays often spell the kiss of death for diets because everywhere you look, you are tempted by dishes and desserts that are chock full of cholesterol, sugar, and butter. For some places, the worst thing about winter is that it also happens to be when Christmas and New Year's are celebrated - two holidays that are full of traditions involving food. Moreover, around these two special occasions, an entire season has been created. It is a season marked by special songs, special décor, and special foods. Temptation is simply omnipresent during this period and most people need help to stay slim and healthy during holidays, when food is so plentiful and tempting.
Studies suggest that the negative impact the winter holidays has on health is rarely reversed. For many people, the pounds gained during the winter celebrations are not only difficult to shed, but they can also actually add to a long-term increase in body weight. In turn, this sustained weight gain means a stronger likelihood of medical problems. Higher cholesterol levels and sugar levels often result from the endless partying that goes on between the last week of November and the first week of January.
If you have worked hard to be healthy and to avoid being overweight, you know you need to think proactively to stay that way when the winter season's festivities come around. The wise holiday merrymaker must not lose sight of the need to keep from falling into a potentially dangerous health situation, and there are several pointers that can help people enjoy the holidays without regrets after the last present has been opened and the last box stored for next year's festivities.
Ways and Tips to Enjoy the Holiday Without Guilt
- 1Condition yourself to stick to healthy eating.
- Tell yourself with conviction that you will not forget to eat and drink moderately, to control your food portions so that you don't overeat, and to choose the better, healthier foods all the time.
- Make it a habit to ask yourself every time you want to reach for a piece of cake if you really need to eat, or if it is just a craving, and especially if it's not even coffee time.
- 2Keep a daily food diary.
- 3Make satisfactory alternatives available.
- 4Get to know the goodies that are good.
- Find out what these are and where you can get them. If you cook and bake, try making them.
- Here are some unbelievably delicious goodies that can take the place of most desserts without expanding your waistline: Sugar free peanut butter cookies, orange dream cheesecake, lemon cheesecake and chocolate fudge pie. All of these desserts have sugar free, low fat versions - but you would never be able to tell just by tasting them.
- 5Clear your environment of triggers.
- 6Don't ever go hungry.
- 7Give your brain a chance to catch up.
- 8Allow the cravings to pass.
- Cravings actually pass. If you can hang on to your sanity and let things ride or nibble on a carrot instead, you will be able to outlast the craving.
- Now if the craving comes in tandem with some genuine hunger, chances are your stomach will inform you of its needs even after the craving is gone.
- In this case, look for something healthy and low in calories to eat.
- 9Savor the flavors fully.
- 10Plan your shopping and your meals.
- 11Budget your calories.
- For example, if you are going to attend an office party after work, have a salad for lunch and other foods that are on the lower end of the calorie ladder.
- Munch on a few carrot sticks for snacks so that you will have some leeway for the party food you will be eating.
- 12Go slow on alcohol.
- 13Make wise food choices.
- 14Know which foods can bring up your blood cholesterol levels.
- 15Keep yourself active.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator, if it's warm enough, park a block away so you will need to walk, and watch TV while exercising on a stationary bike.
- Physical activity will help keep those dreaded pounds from settling on your body. If you engage in physical activities outdoors when the weather is warm, find an alternate activity when it's too cold to walk or jog in the park.
Winter and its holidays can be terrible for your figure and your general state of health, but ultimately, everything is up to you. Take each day as it comes and do your best to keep fit while you enjoy the season.
Recent edits by: Lynn, Ana Balayon, Nerissa Avisado