5 ways to lose weight after the holidays

This is something that we experience at the start of every year. December holiday festivities often encourage overeating and consumption of calorie-heavy foods, resulting in significant weight gain.  This is why you need to try out quick-acting weight loss programs, which are also readily available online. Some of the weight loss programs that appear at this time of year are not only unreliable, but also unhealthy. Fortunately, it is possible to lose those extra pounds the right way. Here are five safe ways to lose weight after the holidays.

Shrink Your Stomach

Did you know that your stomach is “elastic”, meaning that it can shrink or widen depending on the amount of food you eat?

This is one of the main reasons why weight loss surgery fails. A small, surgically created stomach can adapt over time to accommodate larger amounts of food. If this scares you, note that the opposite is also true. Also, if you eat less, your stomach will shrink over time to hold smaller amounts of food, causing you to eat less calories and lose weight. So, when eating at home or at a local restaurant, remove a third of your plate, this will reduce the temptation to finish your entire plate.

Increase your protein

Research suggests that protein prolongs feelings of fullness. The reason is that they are harder to digest, reducing insulin spikes. Foods rich in proteins also tend to be bulkier.

People who eat a high protein breakfast or lunch are often less hungry by the next meal. Plus, protein usually requires your body to burn a few extra calories for digestion. However, try to stick to low-fat sources of protein like chicken, salmon, Greek yogurt or thinly sliced turkey breast. By opting for protein at all meals, you will prolong feelings of fullness and reduce overeating.

Cut down on cocktails

All the pomegranate martinis you consume over the month of December affect your health in more than one way.

Alcoholic drinks tend to be rich in sugar and fat. Further still, the stomach and brain do not register liquid calories in the same way as solids, so we tend to drink without considering the added calories. It’s time to cut back on eggnog and find alternatives that are equally satisfying but less calorie-rich. When you’re thirsty, try low-calorie drinks, like tea (skimmed milk and sweetener), sparkling water, or a pitcher of cold fruit-infused water. People very often confuse thirst with hunger, so next time you feel like a snack, take some water first, have a few drinks and wait 20 minutes.

Increase your daily exercise

If you include a little daily exercise in your workout routine, you will increase your chances of losing weight after the holidays.

After the holidays, resume your usual sporting activities if you are a member of a gym. If not, feel encouraged to join a nearby gym. Some of the best deals and discounts on courses and memberships start right after holiday season. If you’re already a fan of gymnastics, fitness, and sports in general, try doing some cardio or strength training on your off days.

Stop sweets

Research shows that consuming sugar can be addictive and can lead to an unhealthy cycle of food cravings and binge eating.

Much of this is due to the insulin spikes that accompany foods rich in sugar content. High insulin lowers blood sugar levels, so extra calories are stored as fat. This causes a blood sugar crash later on, making you irritable, drowsy and causing a “food coma”. The sugar crash also causes other cravings for sweets in order to raise your blood sugar levels, but inevitably leads to another crash, causing a snowball phenomenon that can be difficult to escape. Also, after your last party dinner, make a vow to cut ALL desserts for four to ten days.

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