It’s that time of year again! Christmas time is here but don’t fear if you are afraid of packing on those unwanted pounds I will be discussing some nutrition strategies to help you enjoy this holiday season without trying to tighten your belt buckle the next day.
My background in nutrition? I am a certified Precision Nutrition Level One coach and PN has worked with elite athletes in the UFC from Georges St. Pierre to the NFL and Nike. I really like PN’s approach towards nutrition – it isn’t so much about this is what you are going to eat but about habits.
Instead of telling what foods you should eat or shouldn’t eat, I am going to tell you habits to focus on while eating the foods you still like because research has shown you will be more successful doing it this way than following a meal plan.
The first habit that I get most of my clients to focus on is to eat slowly. A meal should take 15-20 minutes to eat. This should be no problem during the Christmas season! The reason why you want to take 15-20 minutes to eat a meal because there is a brain gut in your stomach that tells your brain that you are full- If you eat fast this signal won’t get to your brain so it will be really easy to over eat. Some strategies that you can do to do this is to set the fork down in between bites, and count how many times you chew (there are apps for that …no really)
The second habit that you can focus on during the holidays is to drink more water, especially when you are out drinking! I’m not saying you shouldn’t enjoy yourself and have a good time; I’m just saying to be smart about it. You should aim to have one big glass of water after each alcoholic beverage and this does two things- one you will be less dehydrated in the morning and you won’t be able to drink as much because you will have more water in your system.
Another tip I got from the Strength Matters community. This will help you reduce your sweet intake in half!
If you have received treats and are afraid of eating more then you should from place your treats two meters or more away from your seat from where you work means that you will consume about as half as many as you would have if they were more visible and close at hand. This comes from a 2006 study from International Journal of Obesity.
The last tip that I will give you is many of my clients find it hard to eat healthy in their household because their significant other or children are not on the same bandwagon if this is you listen up.
If someone is trying to make you eat more then you know you should –talk about how good you feel now, and how having more will lead to feeling worse. On the other hand, if you say “no I can’t, I’m so fat” you are guaranteed to get further debate how you are not fat and how more pie is a great idea. It’s all about reframing mindsets.
I hope you enjoyed my helpful tips and from my family to yours, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!