Holiday Weight - Pt 2

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A friend recently shared on Social Media how excited she was for upcoming year as she’s been consistently eating in a way that’s helped her body release 50lbs. 

WHEN…?

She said, “I’m thankful I’ve found what works best for me and leaves me feeling satisfied & happy. My relationship with food is the best it’s been in a long time.” And then she asked a great question: “When was the last time you entered the holiday season without any worries of weight gain, overindulgence and needing to make New Year’s weight loss resolutions?”

 Powerful! 

THE BEST IT’S BEEN

She didn’t lose 50lbs in a few short months, she’s been diligently, day in and day out, following an eating plan that makes sense for her body and her mind. If you noticed she said, “My relationship with food is the best it’s been in a long time.” This is hands down a key factor to lasting weight loss. 

 I’d imagine she’s in a place where she doesn’t (or rarely) seeks food for emotional support or eats as a hobby vs. fulfilling a physical hunger. 

HOW CAN I…?

For many of you though, you may not be as confident about the holiday season as she is. You may be approaching it, or in the midst of December thinking, ‘dang how can I possibly avoid overindulgence and gaining weight?’

 Here are a few practical strategies we want to share with you today. 

DON’T SAVE UP

 First, don’t save up your day time meals for a big one later.I often hear people say, “I’m so looking forward to this meal. I haven’t eaten all day. I’ve been saving up.” When you skip breakfast and/or lunch just to eat a massive dinner you risk overindulging. You risk letting your blood sugar levels get way too low that all you want is food, and lots of it.  Have a balanced intake throughout the day so that you can also have a balanced intake at dinner as well. 

SATISFIED, NOT STUFFED.

Second, choose only 1-2 of your favourite food options.Check out the selection of food before you start loading up your plate. Decide in advance what one ‘fun’ food you will have. With an array of buttery carbs, fried finger foods, cream sauces, sweet treats and more, ask yourself, “Which of these foods is an absolutely 10 for me?” Choose that one! Personally, it is always my mom’s stuffing or perogies. These are my all-time favourites. I choose one (or a small portion of each) and then the rest of my meal is made up of mostly salad and turkey (with gravy!). When 75% of your plate offers healthy, nutritious food, you can finish your meal feeling satisfied, not stuffed.  

FORK DOWN

 Third, eat mindfully.Put your fork down between bites. After taking a bite of your meal, how often do you immediately load your fork with another bite of food? Most people do it continuously. Instead, wait until you finish chewing and swallowing what’s in your mouth before loading up your fork. This will slow down your eating. It will also increase your focus on the taste and texture of what’s in your mouth, satisfying your appetite sooner. 

RITUALS

Fourth, what new ritual could you have to complete your meal? Without realizing it, dessert has become the ritual that completes most meals, especially at group gatherings. What if instead you had a cup of tea or coffee, went for a walk, or played a game? Maybe you simply chewed gum, brushed your teeth or started cleaning up dishes. Though it may feel unusual at first, having an alternative post-meal ritual can help you skip the dessert table and have you feeling even more satisfied, energized and fulfilled! 

POWER OF THREE

If, however, dessert has to be your ritual, consider the power of three bites. Offering yourself fully to your first bite of indulgence by tuning into the texture, flavour, colour of your food. Research has shown the very first bite is the most rewarding. Every bite thereafter is diminishingly rewarding. Hence, three bites really can be enough for desserts. 

These practices become invaluable tools to helping you get through the holidays maintaining a healthy, balanced diet. If needed, start with one or two of these areas this month and add another practical when you’re ready. 

DISCOVER YOUR BEST

If you want to discover what nutrition plan works best for you, if you want to improve your relationship with food, contact myself and Jen with EmpowerWays. It is always our highest honour to help you lose weight, feel great and live a healthier, happier life! Email us. Check out our website at www.EmpowerWays.com for our New Year’s Health and Weight Loss programs. 

Committed to you!

Kristine Rustand

Master Health Coach, EmpowerWays

Kristine Rustand is a Master Health Coach with EmpowerWays. Everything we do is about empowering you to live a healthier, happier life. You can follow EmpowerWays on Facebook and Instagram. If you want to know how Health Coaching can help you live a healthier, happier life contact Kristine today. EmpowerWays@gmail.com