The holiday season can bring on a lot of temptations that can lead us off track from our healthy habits. It is not uncommon to eat more unhealthy foods and exercise less, which often leads to weight gain. If this sounds familiar, don’t fret, and don’t be discouraged!

Here are some healthy tips to help you get through the holidays without packing on the pounds, especially after having bariatric surgery.

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9 Helpful Tips to Avoid the Holiday Weight Gain

    1. Don’t stress! If you revert to old habits during the holiday, try your best to get back on track the following day! Substantial weight gain doesn’t come from just one day of bad eating or a single dietary splurge; it comes from poor choices day after day for a period of time which turn into bad habits. If you have a bad eating day work extra hard the following day to make healthy choices and drink extra water!
    2. Select the foods you want the most for your plate. There’s not enough room in your smaller stomach to eat a little of everything like you used to without the risk of making yourself sick.
  1. Try to avoid or limit the worst foods: pecan or sweet potato pie, mashed potatoes, gravy from drippings, eggnog, mixed drink cocktails. These dishes can be made healthier, but most of the time, they are packed with grease, butter, and/or sugar and are very high in calories. Try making a healthier version of these dishes yourself, or avoid them completely.
  2. Drink extra water!!! Even more than 64 ounces! A lot of times, weight fluctuations during the holidays are due to a higher amount of salt or carbs, which can make you feel more bloated than usual. Drink extra water to help flush out any extra sodium.
  3. Don’t take home the unhealthy leftovers. If you hosted the dinner, send those dishes home with your guests.
  4. Be careful with holiday cocktails. People usually consume more alcohol during the holidays. Keep an eye on these empty calories. Don’t forget you will feel the effects of alcohol quicker and with less in your system, so keep alcohol to a minimum. Also, holiday cocktails typically contain a lot of sugar, so if you plan to drink, try to stick with a glass of wine or a spirit mixed with a non-carbonated sugar-free drink.
  5. Instead of baking treats, make holiday crafts that you can give as gifts.
  6. Don’t neglect your workouts: Any exercise will help you burn some of those extra calories you consumed and will also help relieve holiday stress!
  7. Stay busy this month with festive activities. Here are some suggestions:
    • Cut down your own Christmas tree at a tree farm
    • Go snow sledding
    • Try out ice skating
    • Find ways to help others in need
    • Take walks to see Christmas lights
    • Explore nearby towns that host Christmas events
    • Host a holiday toy drive

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