Many people report weight gain over the Christmas break. This is likely due to an increase in sedentary behavior and over-indulging with food and alcohol. For this reason, it is a good idea to go in prepared so weight gain can be prevented or at least kept to a minimum.
1. Don’t go to Christmas lunch / dinner or Christmas parties hungry
You’re always going to eat more than usual when going to a party or Christmas lunch / dinner. So it’s not a good idea to turn up to these events hungry. This will lead to even more over-indulging before you’ve even realised you’re full. If you eat a small, low kilojoule snack beforehand you will be far less likely to eat a days worth of energy in one meal.
2. Avoid over-doing the nibbles
There’s normally hours of sitting around and chatting before lunch and/ or dinner is on the table. In this gap people tend to pick on nibbles – cheese, jatz, cabanossi, pretzels, dips and bread. These are all energy/ fat dense items and will significantly will add up.
3. Keep active
Don’t neglect activity over the Christmas break. It’s easily done but it doesn’t have to be a chore. Change it up and go for a swim at the beach each day, play Frisbee, or go on a walk with the family and dog. Anything to get you up and moving.
4. Keep the over-indulging to the events only and don’t draw it out for weeks
Often the delicious food and drink isn’t kept to just Christmas but rather it lasts for half of December and January. This is where weight gain can become imminent. Everyone should enjoy some of their favourite foods on Christmas day and at Christmas parties but it is best to keep it to those dates and then return to a regular diet. Continuing to snack more, drink more, have larger portion sizes and regular desserts will ultimately lead to some extra kilos that weren’t there before, particularly if exercise is at an all time low.
5. Continue to be mindful
Many people adopt the ‘all or nothing’ attitude at this time. They think they have eaten poorly at one or two meals so they might as well continue doing so. However, every additional snack, serving of dessert or dinner will make a big difference. If you have had a not so good day then that is even more reason to get back in to the swing of it and choose lighter meals for the rest of the day or the following day. In the long run you will be thankful that you did!
6. Don’t go overboard with the alcohol or sugary drinks
Try and keep alcohol to a minimum. It is packed full of kilojoules and provides absolutely no nutritional benefits at all. This is one way to quickly add on the kilos if you are over doing it or having a couple of drinks each day. Water is the best option as opposed to juices and soft drinks.
Contact us for results focused nutritional advice
This article was written by our dietitian Belinda Elwin who is a Dietitians Association of Australia member, and Accredited Practicing Dietitian and Nutritionist. If you have questions about healthy eating, make an appointment. We‘ll provide you with a simple and effective routine targeted to your concerns. Contact us today!