Healthy Holidays: How to Maintain and Not Gain Over the Holidays

The holiday season is upon us! Soon your calendar will be busy with social events and your office kitchen filled with baked goods. The holidays are a special time of year when opportunities to break good habits are everywhere you go. According to the National Institute of Health, the average American gains one or more pounds around the holiday, and that weight often doesn’t come off after the holidays are over. Here are some tips to stay health focused this holiday season:

  1. Plan ahead: Before heading to parties, enjoy a high-protein snack, and you'll be less likely to overdo it on desserts. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated between cocktails, or offer to be the designated driver to avoid drinking your calories.
  2. Buddy up: Having a friend to schedule exercise with or discuss your weekly cravings will help keep you accountable and give you some added incentive to stay on track. If you're competitive, you can work together to set some health goals to prevent holiday gains.
  3. Host a healthy holiday party! Lead by example--fill the house with healthy and satisfying recipes. Nutritious swaps like low-fat dairy in dips with assorted veggies instead of crackers. Keep the focus off of food--plan a group activity and start a new, healthier family tradition.

Instead of stressing yourself by adding pressure to lose weight this time of year, focus on maintaining your current weight (and not gaining) to help you stay on track. Happy Holidays!