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Holiday Nutrition Tips to Avoid Weight Gain

Alarmingly, the average person gains around two pounds during the holiday season. From the heaps of holiday treats to the large decadent meals, this finding shows that significant weight gain can accumulate between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. If this extra weight isn't lost, the pounds can continue to pack on over the years. To help tackle the situation before it gets out of control, it is best to follow these guidelines when indulging during the holidays this year:

1. Have a snack about an hour before a large meal. One cup of vegetable soup or half a cup of raw vegetables can help rev up your metabolism while saving your appetite. This amount of food from vegetable sources will fill your stomach just enough to allow you to make good food choices come dinner time.
2. Keep a once-a-year policy with your meals. Make sure to eat foods that you know will only be around during  this time of year. Why fill up on mashed potatoes and chocolate chip cookies when you can have them year round? Save the calories for the foods that you know don't come around too often.
3. Don't forget your exercise regimen. The holidays are no excuse to stop exercising. If you run every morning or pop in an exercise DVD during lunch break, the holidays are a time to continue with your routine. You may even want to double it up!
4. Encourage family activity after a meal. While we all want to snooze after a large family meal, it may be better to play an active Wii or Kinect game as a family instead. Board games or walking after a large meal can also help you metabolize the meal and aid in digestion. Plus, some family-friendly competition can't hurt.
While the holidays often are synonymous for weight gain, it can be better managed with a little planning. By keeping yourself accountable for your meal intake and activity levels, you can avoid the holiday bulge.

Health Disclaimer. Copyright 2011. Published with permission. Catherine Maimone Conrad is a registered dietitian and licensed nutritionist who grew up in East Brunswick, New Jersey with a passion for wellness and health. She is a freelance writer and is not directly affiliated with avivahealth.com.

Holiday Nutrition Tips - Catherine Maimone Conrad, RD, LDN - Health Disclaimer
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