It’s the day after Christmas and you might be feeling a little dehydrated, maybe a little under the weather, and a little lazy. Megan Bobay, RDN, CD, registered dietician nutritionist, Parkview Huntington Hospital, is here to offer her advice for getting back on track after the holiday health detour. Aside from drinking plenty of water, eating sensibly and getting enough rest today to recover from the past couple of days, she suggests implementing these long-term strategies for enduring success.
The holidays are a time to enjoy family and friends, at gatherings often centered around food. None of us are perfect, and certainly we’ve indulged in some family favorites over the past few days, but the holidays are just a small portion of the year. It’s time to get back to the “normalcy” of our lives. This is not the time to start a fad diet or jump into an unrealistic exercise routine. Get back to the basics and commit to working on some healthy habits.
If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Quick fixes are just that, they do not promote long-term weight loss and may lead to serious health problems. They often restrict nutrients, and losing more than 3 pounds a week can actually increase your risk of gallstones and lead to heart issues.
Simply put, weight loss is a result of decreasing the amount of calories you take in and increasing physical activity. That’s it. Everyone loses weight differently, which often makes it frustrating, but your age, genes, health and habits all play a role.
- Tracking your intake can help you stay accountable. Jot down what you eat on a notepad or use a free app/website, such as MyFitnessPal®.
- Eat every 4-5 hours to give your body the energy it needs, and aim for 3 evenly sized and spaced meals and 1 snack. Include a healthy protein at each of these and make half your plate fruit and vegetables. Choose whole grains, healthy fats and low fat dairy.
- Research is showing the good bacteria in yogurt helps with weight management and blood sugar control; make yogurt a daily snack.
- Liquid calories add up! Increase your water intake and try adding fruit to make it more interesting.
- Continue the family meals you enjoyed during the holidays. Turn the TV off, sit at the table and take at least 20 minutes to enjoy your meal.
- Work toward 150-300 minutes of exercise a week. Research has shown benefits in as short as 10-minute sessions. Try for 10 minutes, 3 times a day most days of the week and work some strength training in a couple times a week.
Looking for more guidance? Contact the Parkview Health and Fitness Center at (260) 373-4151, the Parkview Center for Healthy Living at (260) 672-6500, Parkview Huntington Hospital Adult Fitness Center at (260) 355-3240 or Parkview Noble Health and Wellness Center at (260) 347-8125, or ask your physician to fax a referral to Parkview Nutrition Services at (260) 266-8588 or (260) 355-3236 for Huntington county.