Everyone loves the holiday season. Spending time with family and friends, sounds of laughter throughout the house, mouthwatering smells radiating from the kitchen, feasting on holiday specialties … and feeling extra padding around the midsection?
If you’re feeling the aftereffects of holiday overindulgence, fear not. FIU Health CEO Dr. Eneida Roldan, a board-certified specialist in obesity, gives us her tried and true advice to whip yourself back into your best shape in no time.
1. Hop on the scale. Weighing yourself at the beginning of the process will help you keep track of your progress.
2. Revert back to your normal eating routine. When you prepare your own meals, you can better control portions and sodium intake.
3. Eat three balanced meals daily. Starvation diets will confuse your body and are counterproductive.
4. Drink water. Hydration is key. Drink 9 to 10 glasses of water every day and refrain from alcohol and soft drinks. Keep in mind that mixed drinks contain the largest amount of sugar, therefore, packing the worst punch. If you do drink, do so in moderation and keep it to no more than a couple of drinks as a weekend treat.
5. Exercise. Move your body! Begin or resume your moderate exercise routine. If it has been a while since you last exercised, start by walking at least 30 minutes a day. And if you slowed down your normal exercise for holiday celebrations, go back to your normal routine.
A silver lining
Although it varies from person to person, the National Institutes of Health estimates holiday eating results in an average gain of one to two pounds, which isn’t exactly the end of the world. Also, “not all the weight you gained is fat, you also gained water and muscle,” says Roldan, which means you should begin to see results naturally once the constant holiday food and drink cycle ceases. You just have to be a little patient, make healthy lifestyle choices and think positive.
– John Marin contributed to this report.