Beware these Holiday Hidden Calories

5 ways to survive the holidays without putting on pounds.

It's holiday time, and you've worked hard all year. What's the harm in a festive treat? Not only does holiday weight gain accumulate over the years, leading to long-term problems like diabetes, but high sugar and alcohol intake has negative effects, too. Here are 5 tips for maintaining health this holiday season.

  1. The beverage bulge. A decadent coffee treat while shopping or a rum-eggnog concoction at a party feels like a reward, but actually punishes your body. Liquid doesn't make you feel full, so you consume excess sugar and fat. If you give in, brush your teeth after to keep down your dentist bill.
  2. Not-so-innocent snacks. Nutritious items like nuts get dressed up in toffee, where sweeteners and additives outweigh the benefits. Dips like guacamole pair up with trans fatty chips to the same effect, so beware the mindless grazing! Keep track of what you've eaten by writing it down. Remember that even no-calorie sweeteners like sucralose pose health risks.
  3. Fit for a feast. Resist the buffet binge by consuming water or fruit prior to a meal. Avoid second helpings and choose a small plate that can't hold more than your stomach. Find a health buddy to report to. Accountability goes a long way in aiding will power.
  4. Cookie attack! All your neighbors have delivered cookies to your door to share the holiday cheer. Enjoy a few yourself, then take the rest to the office for others. If store bought goods are sealed, many soup kitchens will accept such donations.
  5. The holiday hustle. Togetherness is at the heart of holiday magic. What better way to gather with loved ones than to walk or toss a football after dinner? Research whether your community has a "turkey trot" on Thanksgiving Day and recruit your friends to start the season with the right priorities.

Brandon Regional Hospital offers resources to help you lose weight. Questions or concerns? Call our free Consult-A-Nurse® service at 1-888-327-2636 or visit our health library. Walk-in appointments are also welcome.

Related posts:
Back to the Basics: Weight Loss in the New Year
Healthy Holiday Eating Survival Tips

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