How To Lose Weight During the Holidays

Forget about the myth of the dreaded holiday weight gain. You can actually lose weight during the holidays sampling delicious menus, feeling attractive and in control. And if you believe this is sensationalism and can’t be accomplished by mere mortals, I am living proof!


10 strategies to lose weight from Thanksgiving to New Year’s

  • Calories in and calories out. Increase your exercise regimen with just fifteen minutes extra cardio, and you can add to your strength training either a few more repetitions or up the intensity with heavier weights. Make sure you vary your workout pattern to shock your body into weight loss. Physical activity stimulates the neurotransmitter dopamine, which has been linked to post-exercise mood improvement: No nervous nibbling!
  • Work out with someone a little bit better than you, so that you can go stronger longer. If your workout buddy is too good, you will give up. However, if your partner is a little bit better, you will compete because you are motivated.  Brandon Irwin from Kansas State University claims that a better exercise partner can boost your workout by 200%. Irwin views it like a romantic relationship.
  • Eat an apple before a meal along with two cups of water.  A crunchy apple packs a lot of fiber and water will make you feel fuller. Hot liquids which you sip slowly will relax you while keeping you satiated. Sipping Green tea is preferable to sipping coffee which often creates a carb craving.
  • Cut down on fatty dairy which creates bloat. Aim for low-fat dairy products which actually reduce fat around your middle.
  • Taste everything you desire with small samples. But do eat veggies and lean protein as the main event. Make sure to eat salmon, because stressed and depressed people are often low in omega 3’s and they eat to fill an empty heart.
  • Stick with natural ingredients. Artificial sweeteners can trigger sugar lust – unbridled. Natural ingredients create balance and well-being.
  • Eat in a more relaxed setting where you converse with friends and family. People in the quieter area ate an average of 18 percent less of their meals, even though they spent more time at the table according to Brian Wansink from Cornell Univ.
  • Get your zzz to control your appetite during the day. During sleep you generate an appetite suppressant, Leptin, so you can lose weight while you sleep.
  • Don’t sit all day even if you participated in a vigorous exercise session. Sitting a lot packs on the pounds on your derriere. Get up and move by taking short breaks throughout the day. Look for opportunities to walk or move with alacrity while doing household chores.
  • Reduce stress by choosing to simplify your schedule and tasks. Happy people eat more fruits and vegetables and fewer potato chips and ice cream. “Fruits and vegetables are good for your mental health as well as your physical health,” says researcher Sarah Stewart-Brown, MD, professor of public health at Warwick Medical School in the U.K. “It’s not surprising, as the two are related to each other.”
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photo by: Alan Cleaver

About Debbie Mandel

I'm an author, stress management specialist, and my latest book is "Addicted to Stress: A Woman's 7 Step Program to Reclaim Joy and Spontaneity in Life" (Wiley, Sept. 2008). Also, I host a weekly radio show and run an educational site where you can learn more about building immunity to feeling bad: