November 26, 2013

With the holiday season in full swing, it's hard to focus on maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine. But did you know that the average person gains between one and three pounds during the holidays? While this might not seem like a huge deal, the fact is, most people don't lose that weight after the seasonal festivities are over.

So what can you do to stay healthy? Here are some tips:

  • The holiday season is not a time to diet—focus on maintaining weight.
  • Stay active! If it's too cold to exercise outside, try workout videos or take the opportunity to do housework. Putting up holiday decorations can also be a great cardiovascular activity.
  • Drink plenty of water. Sometimes the brain thinks we're hungry, when really our body is just dehydrated.


Preparing for holiday meals:

  • Don't skip meals beforehand. It might be tempting to skip breakfast or lunch before a big Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, but going into a big meal famished will cause you to overeat.
  • It's all about portion control: You can enjoy all your favorite holiday dishes, but do so in moderation. Don't let yourself get carried away—the leftovers are usually as good the second time around.
  • Load up on fruits and veggies: These lower calorie, high nutrition foods will help fill you up and provide essential vitamins and minerals. A good rule of thumb is to look at your plate for a variety of colors in food.
  • Eat slowly: It takes the brain 20 minutes to register that you are full. Try to remember to put down the fork in between bites.
  • Don't drink your calories: Holiday drinks like punch and eggnog can have as much as 500-800 calories per serving. Choose water or a diet soda/unsweetened tea with your meal instead.


One of the greatest gifts you can give yourself and your loved ones is the dedication to staying healthy. For healthy recipes, exercise tips and other information on staying healthy, visit our Health Information Center online at

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