Monday, January 01, 2007

Holiday Dieting Remedies

The holidays are here, or soon will be and you are on a diet. There's a very good chance that the temptation to binge on some of the foods on your taboo list will be within easy reach. How will you handle it?

Holiday dieting can be the hardest time to stayed focused especially since there are so many of them. Besides the common ones like Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter, if you celebrate them, most people forget the various other celebrations like the sporting events, weddings, baby showers, birthdays and the like. Something can be celebrated almost every weekend. What is one to do?

While every intention is to stay on course with the dieting program, sometimes it may not be so easy as social pressures mount. Here are some suggestions to keep you from getting the holiday dieting blues.

Look at your dieting program as a continuing journey and not as an instant destination. If one of the meals exceeds your calorie allowance, look at the next meal and adjust it accordingly. Remember, most people get those holiday dieting binges and the ones that come out of it ahead realize that one meal won't completely sabotage the entire program.

See the bigger picture. If you look at your dieting schedule weekly instead of daily, then one bad meal isn't going to be such a detriment if you have 30 or more meals in that week.

After a meal disaster, just get back into the saddle and continue on your dieting journey again. Most people give up because they feel they have failed and it's no use staying on the diet any longer. The ones that succeed are the ones who move on and don't give up.

Some knowledge of calorie amounts in foods can be very helpful. Find the foods that have lower calories and remember them for your holiday dieting adventures. You will be able to eat more of those lower calorie foods without feeling deprived.

Portion sizes can make a tremendous difference in your success. In calorie dense foods, the size of the portion consumed can amount to 1/3 or more of your daily intake.

There is a signal sent to the brain from the stomach that says it is full or satisfied. This satiety message takes approximately 20 minutes to reach the brain. To decrease the calories consumed in that meal, eat slower. Try chewing your food longer and taking a short break between mouthfuls as that will waste some time to get within that 20 minute window of opportunity.

Drinking water can be very helpful in keeping the diet on course. If you drink water before a meal, your stomach will have something in it and produce a somewhat satisfied feeling. This will help to cut down on the portion size of your meal. This suggestion can work anytime you feel hungry. Interesting enough, sometimes the need for water is disguised as a hungry feeling. So drinking water can not only help your holiday dieting needs, but also anytime you have a craving for food.

The drinking of water also has the benefit of having zero calories. Instead of having a sugar sweetened drink or any alcoholic beverage, have water instead. Remember to look at the total calorie intake taken in a one-week period of time. Water every day will help keep that total amount within control if you tend to binge.

Eating snacks can push up the calorie count in one day. Sometimes people will eat some snacks as a social thing and not really for the hunger satiety. Be aware of this because it can be very easy to consume a high amount of calories with just this action alone. If you need to snack then hopefully there will be a vegetable platter close by. Try eating celery. You can eat as much of it as you want because celery requires so much work for the stomach to digest. This makes the calorie amount negligible.

If holiday dieting is getting you down, perhaps some of the suggestions mentioned can pick you up and give that extra push to stay on track with your goals. Your success will come from taking that continuing journey one step at a time to make your holiday and dieting adventures a good one.


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