If you’re like many people, the holiday season is a time of good cheer and great food. The first part is wonderful, but the second can be problematic.
During the holiday season, the presence of all that food can be a tremendous temptation, and many people suffer from weight gain, promising themselves they’ll lose weight at the start of the new year.
Unfortunately, if you’re in the habit of serial dieting and see your weight fluctuate wildly over time, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Those fluctuations in weight will literally rewire your brain. Any time you diet, your body will not interpret it as dieting, and instead will see it as a crisis. This will cause it to respond by hoarding every bit of energy it can, and of course, when your body hoards energy, it does so in the form of fat, which makes it harder for you to lose weight and keep it off.
The best way to shed those holiday pounds is to keep it simple. Here are some strategies for doing just that:
• Eat out of a smaller plate. This will fool your brain into thinking you’re eating more than you are. The plate is full, so your stomach is happy.
• Drink more water. Water is a fantastic dieting tool because it contains no calories and your body needs it anyway. Most Americans are dehydrated, and this is due in large part to our coffee obsession (coffee dehydrates you!), so odds are that you’re not getting as much water as you should be. There’s no such thing as too much water, and it will help make you feel full.
• Fool your brain about exercise – Let’s face it, nobody likes exercise, but there’s a simple trick you can use to fool yourself into enjoying it more. Just pick any activity that you’ve always wanted to try or currently enjoy and start doing more of it. The catch is that it needs to have a physical component. This could be anything from fencing to hiking or whitewater rafting to tennis. It doesn’t matter, as long as those conditions are met. You’ll be doing something you love, and you’ll get more exercise, which will help you keep those pounds off!