It's that time of year when holiday desserts and treats are piled upon us. Here are five tips from Bay Area fitness guru Joanie Greggains to help you slice through the temptation and still have a good time:
1. Don't starve yourself. The number one rule to avoid holiday overeating is to make sure you eat something before you go to holiday parties. Arriving hungry will make it difficult to resist overeating all that high-calorie holiday food.
2. You're not hungry, you're thirsty. Often, what we think are hunger pangs are actually due to dehydration. So, before diving into a plate of appetizers. test your hunger signal by drinking an 8-ounce glass of water. Wait about five minutes and pay attention to see if you are still hungry.
3. Eat breakfast. Skipping breakfast often results in over indulging later in the day, especially dangerous during the holidays with so many sugary foods around. Even if you're not hungry, start your day off with a light breakfast such as fruit and yogurt or a protein shake.
4. Exercise. As little as 30 minutes a day of cardiovascular exercise can help you deal with the stress that the holidays can bring. The main thing is to MOVE. Taking a walk after dinner is especially helpful because moving around will help with digestion and reduce your chance of becoming sluggish or tired.
5. Buy a new outfit. Buy something that makes you feel good and that you are really looking forward to wearing. When you feel good about yourself on the outside, it will help you respect yourself from the inside and you'll be less inclined to keep reaching for "just one more cookie."