How To Avoid Weight Gain During the Holidays: A different perspective

Originally presented at Chautauqua Institution

You have lots of great experts who can tell you how to attend parties without overeating and what to substitute for high fat foods at family dinners. But what is the psychology of overeating and how can you make it work for you.

Q – What do we know about gaining holiday weight?

  • Your brain remembers the joys of eating certain things at the holidays that recall good times associated with food.
  • You are likely to eat 92% of what is on your plate regardless of portion size and you have more food to choose from during the holidays.
  • We know that when you socialize while eating, either at a restaurant or at home with family, that you will all be much more likely to eat more. The social factor creates more eating
  • If you are at home during the holidays, you will be influenced to eat things you see advertised on TV and the shopping channels as well as other foods because your appetite has been aroused!

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How can you have a healthy holiday for you and your family?

  • Change eating routines, patterns and favorite dishes to confuse the brain away from craving too much of the usual foods. So if chocolate chip cookies are the ones everyone eats too much of, mix them up on a tray with some healthier snacks. Or introduce foods that support a family member with a restricted diet. Make a meal that is sugar free or gluten free for example. The more you can change patterns, the more you can retrain the brain.

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