5 Scary Nutrition Mistakes You Don’t Want to MakeHalloween is nearly here, and the holidays are just around the corner. For most of us, this means consuming more than our usual share of calories. From downing a handful of Halloween candy to enjoying a five course Thanksgiving meal, weight gain can happen without you even being aware.
In fact, the average American gains five pounds during the holiday season. But, this doesn’t have to be the case. By avoiding some very common nutrition mistakes, you can start 2013 without having weight loss on your list of New Year’s resolutions.
Here’s our rundown of five of the scariest nutrition mistakes that you can make this season that can lead to weight gain. By avoiding these, you won’t have to be afraid of getting on that bathroom scale on January 1st.
With holiday decorating, shopping for gifts, parties, and family get-togethers, time can be in short supply this time of year. It’s easy to just skip a meal. And, when you’re trying to avoid weight gain, it can even seem like a good thing. But, the result of a missed meal is typically overeating when you finally do get around to eating.
Having a variety of options for quick meals can help prevent the urge to skip breakfast, lunch or dinner. Quick on-the-go, healthy meal options like a Lean1 shake can help stave off hunger while providing steady nutrition throughout a busy day.
Drinking Too Many Calories
Wintery drinks like egg nog, hot chocolate, mulled wine, and holiday cocktails can be extremely high in calories. Yet, they’re empty calories that provide little in the way of actual nutrition. Interestingly, most of us don’t consider the calories we drink while watching our weight. Thus, beverages are a leading cause of holiday weight gain. To prevent the need to battle the bulge after the holidays, limit your intake of caloric beverages and substitute water, green tea, and other low-cal drinks whenever possible.
Being distracted while you’re eating is a surefire way to consume more than you want. Repeated “sampling” of the cookie dough during holiday baking, grabbing fistfuls of holiday party snacks, or simply focusing on the TV while eating dinner can all lead to over-consumption and weight gain.
Instead, schedule time in your busy schedule each day to sit at a table and focus on your meals. Limit snacking – particularly if you’re distracted by other tasks, and take the time to enjoy your food.
Too Much All You Can Eat
Buffets are common this time of year, but they can be a key culprit of gaining weight. Instead of loading your plate up and feeling stuffed and regretful afterwards, create a buffet strategy that you can stick with. Grab for the healthy items like tossed salad or raw veggies and keep portions small. Yes, it’s still ok to enjoy yourself, but a buffet shouldn’t be a license for a dieting free-fall.
Avoiding Fresh Produce
Yes, there are typically more fruit and vegetable options in the warmer months. But, there are still many options in the fall and winter. Apples, pears, squash, cranberries, and other cool weather options can be both delicious and nutritious. And, there are plenty of year-round choices available, too. It’s worth a trip to your local farmer’s market to check out what is in season, and you may be surprised by what you find!