By: Christelle Leiker


The Holiday season is here!

Everyone is making holiday plans to travel, cook, entertain, and spend time with loved ones. If you have been on a weight-loss journey this year, I am sure you are thinking about how you will survive the holidays without gaining weight or falling off the weight-loss wagon, and how you will stay on course.

Read below to find out how to do just that and celebrate without overindulging!

I want to preface this by clearing up a common misconception about the holidays and weight gain. It has been a highly promoted claim in the world of dieting that most people gain 5-10 pounds during the holidays (from Thanksgiving to New Year). This is NOT true. In a study found in the New England Journal of Medicine (Yanovsky, 2000), 195 men and women were monitored over one year. The average amount of weight they gained from mid-November to January was LESS THAN ONE POUND. However, the study did state that weight gained was not lost the following year.

So, what does this mean?

It means we are getting off track during the holidays and failing to get back on track. The overindulgence and overeating we are participating in during the holidays is not causing huge amounts of weight gain BUT it is breaking the good eating habits we worked so hard to establish over the year.

4-6 weeks of habitually overeating, eating more dessert than usual, or eating food you have avoided the prior 40+ weeks this year WILL thwart your weight-loss efforts!!

How to Avoid the Weight Gain Trap:

  • Stay focused on your goal
  • Always be mindful when you eat
  • Enjoy but avoid overindulging
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Avoid being hungry when you arrive at an event
  • Portion control, portion control, portion control

Start a new Holiday tradition:

If you are the host, you are at liberty to make changes to holiday meals and celebrations that fit into your new healthy lifestyle. If you are not the host, you can make “suggestions”:

  • Serve food on smaller plates
  • Make smaller dishes this year instead of dishes that could serve an army!
  • Use healthier substitutions in old recipes

Everyone can stand to be healthier. You could be doing others in your family a huge favor as well!

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