Around the holidays it’s natural to pack on five to 10 pounds. With all the delectable foods, parties and cold weather, it’s hard not to indulge.

Weight gain around the holidays may seem inevitable, but there are things you can do to fend off those pesky pounds.

 

1. Don’t “save” yourself for the special holiday meal. Eat four to six smaller meals a day and you’ll be less likely to binge on holiday treats.

2. Plan a pre-party workout. After a workout your metabolism is raised, so your body is more effective at burning the rich holiday foods.

3.Eat slowly. It takes a minimum of 20 minutes for your brain to register that you’re full, so a slower eater will consume less calories.

4.Choose the healthy holiday favorites such as pumpkin, cranberries, turkey, sweet potatoes and chestnuts.

5. Offer to bring a healthy dish to your holiday parties. Most hosts are more than happy to receive help with food. Healthy options can include vegetables, fruit or hummus plate.

6. Try to modify your recipes. For example, when you can, use egg substitutes instead of eggs, non-fat milk instead of whole milk, applesauce instead of oil. When you’re the host, you’re in control of the menu.

7. Beware of liquid calories; they add up quickly! One beer can range from100-200 calories and one 4 oz glass of wine can be up to 100 calories.

8. Don’t stand by the appetizer table. It’s easy to snack on high calorie foods when socializing by the appetizer table.

 

It can be hard to stop from indulging at holiday parties. Don’t fret if you do put on a few pounds this season, just make sure you get back to your normal schedule after the holidays.