Christmas means eggnog, Christmas cookies and a gigantic Christmas Eve feast that you’ve been preparing for since Thanksgiving. Christmas also means binge-eating the most delish foods, and with binge-eating comes just a lil bit of weight gain.
Turns out, this weight gain is actually okay. By giving yourself permission to treat yourself with a few too many sugar cookies and peppermint Hershey kisses, you’re helping yourself moderate your weight in the long term.
It’s okay to splurge on Christmas, just like it’s okay to splurge on Thanksgiving. That being said, don’t eat an entire platter of sugar cookies (unless you want to end up stuck in bed with a throbbing pain in your stomach).
Turns out, most people are reporting a larger weight gain due to post-holiday binge-eating guilt. Studies actually show that most people gain no more than 1 pound from Thanksgiving to early January.
So why, you ask, are we gaining this weight? There’s a few main reasons that’ll give you some justification.
- Social Pressure: We typically eat more in large groups. If everyone else is having a slice of moist chocolate cake, it’s okay to have a slice too, right?
- Stress: The holidays can be a little (or a lot) stressful. Family events, shopping for presents, and all around hectic, the holiday season can get a little crazy and that stress you’re feeling falls hand in hand with comfort eating. A little bit of ice cream goes a long way.
- Broken Routines: Sometimes going on vacation or even just getting a month off of school can mess around with your head. Bored? Eat. Tired? Eat.
- Emotional Connections: Buying matzo ball soup at the diner requires some self control, but when it’s your mom’s matzo ball soup, there’s no stopping you.
Gaining a pound every so often is totally okay, especially if you’re like me and you know that the whole pound consists of chocolate peppermint cupcakes and eggnog (or just a few too many latkes). Don’t worry, we’ve all been there.
And even though it’s sometimes hard to admit, weight gain is associated with the transformation from teenhood to adulthood. We all dread the trip to the mall where we have to get the next size up in our fave pair of jeans, but when you really think about it, it’d be a little weird and a lot unnatural if you were still the same size that you were in the 10th grade by your junior year of college.
If you’re still worried about gaining your Christmas lbs, just remember a few basic things moderation is key. Have one cookie after dinner instead of four after lunch… and three more before bed. No need to skip appetizers or dessert, just have a small portion of each.
There’s no need to diet or deprive yourself of the delish holiday goodies that come with Christmas time. Just be conscious of what you’re eating, and remember that it isn’t Christmas every day (even though it probably should be).