Holiday Weight Management Strategies
The holiday season brings about many emotions and actually can be a time for heightened stress. The pressure to please, managing schedule arrangements, and travel are all too demanding; but seeing loved ones enjoying festive environments and letting loose on the buffet, add back in the reason people enjoy the holidays. Following the approximate month and a half between Thanksgiving and the Bowl games it becomes time to pay back for all the caloric exploits. Luckily a January resolution initiative has been created to solve the problem. The easy answer to prevent this redundant outcome is to follow a calorie controlled diet, exercise most days and engage in plenty of physical activity. This though does not seem to be as easy in implementation as it is in theory. The bombardment of calories, pressures to “drink and be merry”, and all but guaranteed fitness routine “disarray” ensure some payback is owed in January.
Although health-trend magazines and the related will suggest 7-10 pounds of weight gain is to be expected, prospective studies have demonstrated for most people it is more like 2-4 pounds. Not a giant hurdle to overcome, but the literature suggests most people will take at least a pound or two with them on life’s journey, equating to potentially 20 lbs of weight game over two decades. Researchers suggest that for sedentary populations this is a significant contributing factor to adult obesity. Since caloric balance is the problem it makes sense to address this issue in particular. Although fitness magazines suggest remedies like “creating physically active holiday environments”, for most people the recommendation does not comply with interests, habits, or holiday dress codes. Therefore reducing caloric intake along with a planned regimen seems to make the most sense. Committing to a weekly caloric expenditure total in the gym and reducing calories in the kitchen can add up to a weight benign holiday season. Requiring training minimums by your clients ensures they will not fall too far back from their goals and helps keep income steady during the heightened cancellation period.
Part of the management of clients comes from educating them to avoid the common pitfalls that affect us all during the holiday period. Below are some well established suggestions as well as some dietary strategies that may help. Try some of these exchanges when cooking and schedule an appropriate level of physical activity or training; this way the holidays should not make too big a dent in your overall fitness.
Holiday Weight Management Strategies:
Serve healthier low calorie appetizers like vegetable trays with low calorie dips first, people tend to fill-up on available munchies.
Serve or take smaller portions allowing for seconds – people tend to be lazy.
Serve on smaller dishes so that portion control is better managed.
Do not sit or stand close to the hors d'oeuvre tray or the bowl of mixed nuts – location and boredom eating can add significant calories.
Offer calorie free beverages – Crystal Lite, Ocean Spray and others offer a variety of calorie free beverage mixes.
1 Whole Egg - 2 Egg Whites
Sour Cream - Low fat plain yogurt or low fat sour cream
Milk - Skim or 1%
Oil for baking - use apple sauce
Ice Cream - Frozen Yogurt
Heavy Cream - 2 Tablesppons flour whisked into 2 cups skim milk
Whipped Cream - Chilled evaporated skim milk or low fat whipped products
Cheese - Low fat cheese
Egg Nog - Low fat egg nog or four bananas, 1-1/2 cups skim milk or soymilk,
1-1/2 cups plain nonfat yogurt - Beer, Cider, Bailey's & Kahlua
Dry wine, Bloody Marys or Spirits with diet mixer
Roasted Turkey Breast - Remove the turkey skin
Green Bean Caserole - Fresh Green Beans w/ chucks of potatoes instead of cream soup. Top with almonds instead of fried onion rings
Mashed Potato whole milk/butter - Use Skim milk, chicken broth, garlic
Pumpkin Pie - Crustless, evaporated milk instead of heavy cream, top cakes with fruit instead of frosting
Turkey Gravy - Cranberry Sauce with a sugar substitue
Cheesecake - Angel Food cake with fresh fruit
Stuffing - Replace half the meat with dried fruits
Cranberry sauce - Rinse the jelly off canned cranberries and sweeten with honey/citrus
Dark Turkey Meat - White Turkey Meat
Creamy dip - Hummus, low fat/fat-free sour cream and yogurts
Pasta salads - Use whole grain pasta and cut vegetables
National Council Strength Fitness 2010