We are charging all our strength early in the holiday season. between family dinners, festive libationsand indulging in comfort food to handle Holiday stressIt’s easy to overdo it at this time of year.
But worrying about your food choices can add to your anxiety — as if you need to additional stress during this already hectic season. And over time, all that stress can mess with your body and maybe even your mind Contribute to weight gain.
Here’s why: When you deal with chronic stress, your body releases the stress hormone cortisol. Not only does cortisol increase fat storage, but research suggests that it may also increase the likelihood of this happening consume more calories.
So while it is good to follow a few Simple strategies To avoid completely derailing your health goals during the holidays, it’s also important not to obsess over every bite of mint bark.
Here are three reasons why you should focus less on enjoying the occasional vacation.
1. One big meal can’t undo all your hard work
Worried about how many calories are in your grandma’s sugar cookie? Do you feel guilty for taking seconds off your aunt’s sweet potato casserole? Try yourself some slack for special occasions.
“An occasional fiesta won’t sabotage your progress toward your fitness or weight-loss goals,” says Trevor Thiem, Executive Director of Fitness and Nutrition Content at Beachbody, Trevor Thiem.
TRUE, research suggests Holiday weight gain is fairly common – but a typical holiday weight gain is around 0.4 to 0.9 kilograms (about a pound or two). Tighten up your diet, stick to your regular exercise routine, and you’ll be able to get back on track pretty quickly.
2. Your willpower needs the occasional rest day
Willpower is like a muscle that can become tired over timesays Krista Maguire, RD, senior director of nutrition at Beachbody.
The more mental energy you put into trying to avoid certain foods, the more you will crave those “forbidden” foods. But allowing yourself to say yes to a favorite food now and then can give that “willpower” a much-needed chance to recover.
So go ahead and enjoy a little stuffing or mac and cheese at a family dinner—but Maguire really recommends tuning in Practice mindful eating To savor and fully appreciate every bite.
3. Make treats your diet
you may truly Sticking to a diet that excludes hot cocoa forever? Mostly not. to healthy eating plan To work, it must be sustainable.
As long as you don’t eat mashed potatoes, gravy, pecan pie, and eggnog every day, don’t worry about enjoying them in one holiday dinner. The occasional cheat meal or mental indulgence can keep you from feeling deprived or frustrated and giving up.
says Michele Promolaiko, author of sugar free 3.
So instead of completely swearing at sweets and comfort foods during the holidays, focus on savoring a few bites of your favorite treats (and maybe a hot meal, too). Then only Get back to your healthy living game tomorrow.