The holidays are a time of good cheer, great family and friends, and even better food. This is why so many of us make losing weight our chief resolution for the New Year. But why wait until January when you can start controlling your weight now, during the holidays?
I’m not talking about fad diets or starvation. No, no no. I’m talking about controlling your weight with realistic tips that can be easily integrated into your everyday routine. Sounds too good to be true? Well, I’m not saying you will be a size 2 when you wake up tomorrow. No, this is about empowering yourself so the holidays can remain cheerful and not a source of disappointment and self loathing. Now, that is a gift we all would do well to receive — the gift of self confidence.
Look, I am not personally thrilled with my weight right now, but I don’t want to sit on the sidelines of every holiday celebration eating nothing but raw veggies. That’s not practical. In fact, such a plan actually could lead to even worse binge eating, making you feel one hundred times worse. No, thank you. Instead, I am choosing me. I am choosing joy. I am choosing to be the one controlling my weight instead of the other way around. How about you? Are you ready to take control, too? Well, then join me. Follow along with my 15 tips for controlling your weight, and together we will march through the holidays holding our heads up high.
15 Tips For Controlling Your Weight During the Holidays 1 of 16
Keep a Food Diary 2 of 16
Have you ever gotten to the end of your day and not been able to remember what you ate for breakfast? The holidays can make us even more forgetful, because we have so much more to think about and prepare for. And when we forget what we have eaten during the day, it is very easy to overeat. As such, one of the most empowering things you can do to control your weight is keep a food diary. Print out a template from the computer or just craft your own layout in a notebook. The format doesn't matter. All that matters is that you stay honest with yourself through your reporting.
Hot Lemon Water 3 of 16
Kick start your metabolism in the morning with a glass of hot water with fresh lemon. It aids digestion, hydrates your lymph system, enhances your mood, boosts your immune system ... oh, and it helps with weight loss. So get your squeeze on!
Peel Some Potassium 4 of 16
Do you ever think about potassium? I know I never did, until my friend and nutritionist David Grotto explained to me its importance in stabilizing my blood sugar to make me more successful on my weight loss journey. All I have to do is peel my way into controlling my weight. Now that's so easy, any monkey could do it!
Increase Your Fiber 5 of 16
The brilliant David Grotto also taught me that I need to make better friends with fiber, as well as potassium. It too would complement my weight loss journey. While I can't peel my way into increased fiber, I can stir or even sprinkle my way there. No excuse for me not doing it when it's that simple.
Beans Beans Beans 6 of 16
Truth is, before I met David Grotto, I was eating bananas and foods with some fiber in them. It wasn't enough, but at least the items were in my repertoire. However, there was one item he truly introduced me to — beans. Sure, I knew about beans, but in my adult life I rarely if ever cooked beans for myself or my family. I have no real excuse; I just didn't do it. But when you work with master nutritionist David Grotto, not eating beans is NOT an option. They are rich in protein, fiber, and nutrients, making beans an absolute must for everyone's menu, especially when you are working at controlling your weight.
Add a Smoothie 7 of 16
It can be hard to chew all of the servings of fruits, vegetables, fiber, and nutrients you need to in a day, which is why it can be helpful to substitute a meal with a super fueled smoothie. Be sure to liquify it with coconut water instead of juice to save on calories and increase your metabolic burn. You can get as creative as you want. Have fun with it. Remember this is about joy, not deprivation.
Take Your Vitamins 8 of 16
Did your parents make you take vitamins when you were a kid? Did you carry on the practice when you became an adult? I fell out of practice when my life became my own responsibility. As I have gotten older, I have realized that my body needs more than what I can possibly give it through food. Plus, vitamins have gotten that much better over the years, releasing nutrients in a more efficient manner, complementing my system. So, I am back to my childhood routine of taking my vitamins again, just like my mother taught me to.
Drink More Water 9 of 16
Drinking water is about as simple as it gets when it comes to controlling your weight, yet many of us don't drink enough of it. That simple deficiency can be the difference between a success and failure. I start my day with a full glass of water before I even get out of bed, plus I always carry a reusable water bottle with me everywhere I go; that way, I can always be prepared to hydrate.
Take Probiotics 10 of 16
When I was younger, I would take probiotics to offset any system disruptions that would occur when I would take antibiotics. But at my advanced age of 43, I have learned that probiotics have farther reaching benefits than just counterbalancing the effects of a prescription. They help my gastrointestinal system do its best work, all for my health and wellness benefit.
Wear a Pedometer 11 of 16
Do you know how many steps you take in a day? I didn't either, until I started wearing a pedometer. Now I know I take about 1500 steps when walking the dog, but I can do a cool 3600 strolling on the treadmill for 30 minutes. In this computer-centered, car driving world we live in, most of us don't take as many steps as we think we do, and definitely not as much as we need. Wearing a pedometer can arm us with the information we need to make adjustments that will make us more successful in controlling our weight.
Grab 5-10 Minutes of Exercise 12 of 16
A lot of people, yours truly included, claim they can't work out because they don't have the time. I get it. Finding an hour or more to dedicate to a workout in the hustle and bustle of life as we know it can be downright impossible. But what if you only had to find 5 or 10 minutes? Even I can grab that amount of time back from the myriad of demands that I have to meet in a day. Going after exercise in smaller morsels can be the real trick to increasing your physical engagement.
Stretch 13 of 16
Computers and cars don't just make us more sedentary — they also make us feel like our limbs are retracting into our bodies. A good stretch can go a long way towards improving your circulation, reducing stress, and alleviating pain.
Stop and Smell the Flowers 14 of 16
In the last four years, I have gained about 40 pounds of stress. Well, I gained 40 pounds, and it was due to stress. That's why no matter how much effort I put forth towards controlling my weight, if I don't reduce my stress, I won't change the reading on the scale. So as you embark upon your holiday season, remember to stop and smell a poinsettia or two to ease your stress and melt away your weight.
Get More Better Sleep 15 of 16
Relaxing and reducing your stress is great. Getting proper sleep every night will make that pursuit much easier, and it will also propel you forward on your journey to control your weight. Sleep deprivation slows down our metabolism. Without that fire in our bellies, weight will stick to us like glue. I have added melatonin, fish oil, and L-Tryptophan to my bedtime routine to lower my cortisol and help me prepare for sleep. It's working for me; perhaps it would work for you, too. (Always talk to your doctor about any supplements and medications.)
Use Smaller Plates 16 of 16
The point of this blog post has been to help people such as me in their effort to control their weight during the holidays. Why? Because the holidays are filled with delicious, mouthwatering foods that can tip the scales away from our favor. This is about empowerment, not deprivation. One way to feel empowered at a holiday feast is to use smaller plates. Go ahead and have that turkey and sample that dessert cart — just stick to your smaller plate, and the only thing you will overindulge in is joy.
You see, I told you it was nothing complicated, just 15 simple steps you can take for controlling your weight during the holidays. What’s there to lose other than disappointment and denial? I think we can do without those, don’t you?
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