4 tips to avoid holiday weight gain

The Dairy Council of Arizona is a paid advertiser of Sonoran Living Live

Handling the Holidays
You've heard the statistics many times - people tend to gain weight over the holidays, sometimes up to 7 pounds each year. But really, the statistic can be broken down into different types of people with very different results. Actually people who graze constantly on higher calorie items and who are inactive are the people who gain weight.  The way to avoid gaining weight is to pay attention to what you eat and make sure you are active throughout the holiday season.   Remember that including nutrient rich foods, like whole grains, fruits, veggies and low fat and fat free milk, cheese and yogurt will help balance out the sugar.  And make sure that you're still getting the 3 servings of milk, cheese and yogurt you need each day to keep the calcium and other nutrition up.  Try these tips to help make your holidays a healthful, yet happy time:

Pace yourself - don't starve yourself before the party, you'll be at higher risk to gorge on whatever you see. Instead, eat smartly and healthfully prior to the party, but make sure you've saved room in your "calorie bank" for the special foods that are only available at the holidays. And look for the nutrient rich foods, like a variety of cheeses that you may not normally enjoy. They can help meet your nutrient needs and satisfy your cravings.

Bring healthy options - whether it's an appetizer or a dessert, look for a lighter options to bring to the party so you can provide yourself and the other revelers with a variety of foods that can help meet nutrient needs. Switch things like mayonnaise or sour cream for Greek yogurt and heavy cream for fat-free evaporated milk. These will boost the nutritional value and cut calories.

Eat what you love - if it doesn't taste wonderful, why are you eating it?  The holidays are a time for enjoying family, friends and fabulous food.  Skip the standards and really savor those foods that you don't

Stay active - don't give up your regular routine during these busy times. Stick with your scheduled activities as much as possible, and try to fit in a quick workout, whether it's walking from store to store, or up the stairs instead of the escalator.  This will help keep your calories in check and avoid the holiday heft.
Remember, it's ok to indulge a little at this time of year. Just don't over-indulge, that's where your problems can start.  For great recipes and tips, visit www.dairycouncilofaz.org . www.instructables.com

The Dairy Council of Arizona is a paid advertiser of Sonoran Living Live

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