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The Holidays are times of joy and spending time with family and friends. Unfortunately, the Holidays are also times of expanding waistlines and packing on the pounds. This doesn’t have to be you though. I’m going to give you some simple tips to keep your waistline in check this Holiday season so your New Year’s resolution can be reserved for something more fun and fulfilling than starting a diet.
1) Start with the goal in mind.
Set a weight goal for yourself for the week of Thanksgiving. If you’re currently on a fat loss diet, maybe your goal is to maintain your weight during Thanksgiving week. Another option, if you want to indulge, is to set an upper limit of how much weight you’re okay with gaining.
Personally, I plan to indulge a bit. My goal is to gain no more than 1.5 pounds over the course of Thanksgiving. As a side note, I want you to notice that I said, “I plan to indulge a bit.” This is an important mindset shift. I’m going into the Holiday with a plan and know what the outcome will be instead of going in blind and reacting to unexpected weight gain.
With all of that said, the rest of the tips that follow will cover ways of helping you stay within your Holiday goal.
2) Plan your week around events.
This goes for any event, not just Holidays. If you have an event that involves eating lots of tasty foods, an easy solution is to eat less on the surrounding days so that you can eat more on the day of your event. If you have experience counting Calories, you can read about this strategy in greater detail here.
3) Eat more fiber.
High fiber foods are incredibly filling and will help you get full faster. Adding more vegetables, especially green vegetables, to your plate will satisfy you faster. This will help you keep your Calorie intake down and help keep added inches off your waist. The two figures below will help you select high fiber foods.
4) Eat more protein.
Like fiber, protein also has a satiating effect. Eating more protein will help you to feel full faster, so you don't feel like you had to skimp during a Holiday meal with your family. To keep the Calories down, make sure to opt for grilled or smoked options.
5) Drink more.
One underutilized tactic for feeling full faster is drinking diet carbonated beverages. The carbonation will help to stretch the stomach, which slows the production of a hormone named Ghrelin. This, in turn, tells your brain that you are full. If you don’t like diet drinks, get some seltzer water and squeeze some fresh lemon or lime juice into it.
6) Take your time.
In a University of Rhode Island study, researchers served 30 individuals very large plates of pasta on two different occasions.  On one occasion, they were told to eat as quickly as possible. On the other occasion, they were told to eat slowly and to put their utensils down between bites. On both occasions, they were told to eat until they were at a comfortable level of fullness.
It may or may not surprise you to find out they ate less when eating slow. This means you should take time to talk to your family and friends in between bites. You will eat less and will probably have more fun as well.
7) Know when to stop.
This should go without saying but we’ve all been there before, so I’ll say it anyway. Stop eating when you begin to feel full. The key phrase there was “begin to”. There is approximately a 20 minute delay between the time we're actually full and when the signals from the stretch receptors in our stomachs reach our brain, telling us we're full. When eating too quickly, it is very easy to overeat by a large margin.
Enjoy yourself moderately while spending time with family. If you follow these tips, you will feel better mentally and physically since you won’t be miserably full. You also won’t have to dread stepping on the scale the next day. (Click to Tweet this.)
Thank you so much for reading! If you found this information helpful and want to help the Treadaway Training blog grow, simply share this post with a friend. If you like what I have to say, sign up below to become a Treadaway Training insider and get notified for each blogcast and video. I will be back here Thursday with another fat loss topic. As always, God bless you AND your family and I'll see you Thursday.