The holiday season is here and that means a very real risk of overeating for millions of Americans who find themselves struggling against endless parades of ham, mashed potatoes, pie, cookies, and more. Whether you’re visiting family and will be eating multiple Christmas dinners or just have a mountain of food in your kitchen, overeating is a reality you try to avoid every year.
So this year, why not take a handful of preventative steps to ensure you not only avoid packing on the pounds before January 1st, but that you still enjoy the holiday meals with everyone else. Here are three to get you started.
Tip #1 – Fill Up on Healthy Foods First
One of the more common reasons people gorge during the holidays is because they are so hungry. They skip breakfast and lunch in preparation for a big holiday meal and then load up on food filled with fat and sugar.
Instead, be sure to fill up on smarter, healthier snacks early in the day. This includes things like veggies, fruits, and low calorie foods that can keep you full and help you moderate your portions when it comes time for the mashed potatoes, ham, and pie.
Tip #2 – Serve from the Kitchen and Hide the Snacks
A bowl full of snacks sitting two feet from the couch is just asking to be eaten. So keep the appetizers, snacks, cookies, and trays of food hidden in the kitchen so you have to get up and go in there to get something to eat. Serve yourself on a separate plate and eat only what you serve.
Sure you might still overeat from your own plate, but you will be more aware of what you are eating when you do this. Eating directly from trays or bowls makes it impossible to track your intake and all too easy to fall into an endless cycle of eating.
Tip #3 – Wear Fitting Clothing and Remind Yourself of Immediate Consequences
One of the reasons overeating becomes such a big problem for so many people is that they don’t realize they are doing it until a week or two later when they hop on the scale and see the results of their efforts.
So instead of waiting until next year to see how much weight you’ve gained, remind yourself constantly that things are getting out of hand. Wear form fitting clothing that your expanding stomach will struggle against if you keep eating. There is a LOT of room between hungry and bursting at the seams, so if you hit that point, you know it’s time to take a break.
You can enjoy yourself this holiday season without going overboard with a few simple precautions. Use the tips above and any other willpower tricks in your arsenal to keep food intake down and ensure these issues don’t develop.