Many of you joined me earlier this year and made the commitment to be fit and you've worked hard to keep it off. But the true test is upon us with holiday season here and 3 On Your Side has a special Commit to Be Fit-Holiday Edition with some tips on how to stay on track.
Scenes of rich, delicious and fattening foods will be played out throughout the holiday season; at the office and at home. No one is suggesting that you don't eat...far from it. But the temptation to overdo it is fierce.
When asked if she thought seeing the holiday food items pressures us to eat it, Louisa Whitmire said, "Yes, I do, a little bit and especially because a lot of the holiday food is stuff that we don't have around normally."
Whitmire is a registered dietician. So, how do you get through the holiday season without losing the battle of the bulge? I checked with the experts of St. Dominic's Healthy Weight Advantage program and they all agreed the answer is portion control.
One way to execute portion control is by using a smaller plate. Instead of a standard sized dinner plate. Bigger plate, bigger portion. Smaller plate, smaller portion.
And then there is the alcohol at some of those holiday parties you go to. Registered Dietician Laura Hartlein says to keep in mind that mixed drinks can have up to 500 calories per serving.
"So, just having a glass or two of wine is gonna be okay. Now, if you fill up; the goal is to, before you go to that party, to fill up on a healthy snack so you don't over-eat and you don't over drink." said Hartlein.
Whitmire, is also a health educator for St. Dominic Hospital's Healthy Weight Advantage program.
She said, "You know, a lot of our holiday traditions, especially here in the south revolve a lot around food. Trying to take the focus off of food and letting, you know, maybe start some new traditions; playing board games or just sitting down and visiting with people without have to consume so much can help you not gain weight during the holidays."
If you gain a pound or two over the holidays, Hartlein said not to worry. It's normal.
She said, "The thing is, a lot of people, what happens is they gain, it's an average, people say 7 pounds, but we've looked at studies and its about one pound for those 6 weeks from Thanksgiving through the first of the year."
The bottom line said Hartlein, "Practice portion control. Don't over indulge. Eat your fruits and vegetables. Eat every few hours and stay active."
Take it from someone who's been there and done that, Patrick House, winner of NBC's popular reality show, The Biggest Loser.
House said, "...so have a little bit. Taste and enjoy it. But make sure you get the exercise. Make sure you enjoy it to don't over eat, over indulge."
You can learn more about healthy eating for the holidays and weight loss in general by calling St. Dominic's Healthy Weight Advantage program at 610-200-6099.
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