The average American puts on 50% of their yearly weight gain during the holidays. Will you?

Christmas dinnerIt’s no secret that the holiday season is a tough time of year for people looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle. In fact, the average American puts on one pound during the holidays, or 50% of their yearly weight gain.  And despite all our healthy New Year’s resolutions, that pound doesn’t tend to go away.

The holiday season is always filled with great friends and great food, but some holiday meals can top out at over 2,000 calories so it’s easy to see why so many people gain weight during this time of year.

Here are a few tips to make your holidays a little healthier:

  • Portion control: One way to keep the weight off is to practice portion control as much as possible. By keeping your portions small, you can still enjoy your favorite holiday dishes without ruining your diet.
  • Stock up on snacks: The key is to enjoy holiday food in moderation. And a trick to do that is to ruin your appetite before you go to a party by snacking on a handful of healthy nuts, cheese or fruit. That way, you won’t arrive starving and looking to fill up on sweet treats and other unhealthy foods.
  • Eat slowly:  Eating slowly gives your body enough time to realize that you’re full.  It’s also a good idea to drink plenty of water before and during your meal.
  • Stay active: It’s easy to sneak in a quick workout in the morning before the start of your day. This way, you can burn off the extra calories that come with eating at all of the holiday parties.  If it’s too hard to fit in an extra workout session into your busy holiday schedule, an effective way to burn calories is to just do a lot of little things over the course of your day. You can take the stairs instead of the elevator, park your car in a spot farther away than you usually do or take an extra lap around the mall while holiday shopping.

Photo Credit: orangejon

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