5 Things That Prevent Holiday Weight Gain

The holidays are here – parties filled with drinks, desserts, and other enticing foods. How can you enjoy it all without sacrificing your health? Dr. Michael Aziz, internist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York and author of “The Perfect 10” has five tips to prevent weight gain during the holiday season

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    sleeping man

    Although the holidays can be very busy, it’s still important to spend some quality time with your pillow. Aziz said if you aren’t getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night your body might not be able to balance leptin, a hormone that controls hunger in the body. Reduce your alcohol intake and don’t drink too close to bedtime. “Alcohol can put you to sleep faster, but it does not make you go to deep stages of sleep required to balance leptin, an appetite controlling hormone and HGH, a fat-burning hormone,“ Aziz said.
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    Holiday Shopping Up

    When you’re doing your holiday shopping, Aziz suggested you use the opportunity to get some physical exercise by walking. You can park farther from the store you are going to and get some exercise. Walk around shopping for an hour, and you can burn 200 calories.
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    Remember that it’s important to drink ice water when trying to lose weight. Studies show that the ice speeds up your metabolism and burns extra calories. “Any iced drink will do as long as it contains no added calories,” Aziz said.
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    Holiday Sex

    Taking a break from the holiday rush to get cozy with your partner can also help prevent holiday weight gain. Aziz said having sex is a great way to burn calories. In 30 minutes of sexual activity, you can burn 150-250 calories. Sex also releases endorphins to help you feel happier.
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    christmas relax

    De-stressing during the holidays can be difficult, but taking the initiative to find time to relax can help decrease weight gain as well. Meditating for 10 minutes every day to clear your mind is important. “This type of relaxation is great to lower blood pressure, help you relax, and lower your cortisol," Aziz said. "Cortisol, a fat-storing hormone, can go up during the holidays from stress.”
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