I initially set out to make a ‘Top 5’ list of ways to avoid holiday weight gain, until I learned that the average American gains roughly 1-2 pounds over the holiday season– not much help needed there. Still, there are some very good reasons not to gorge yourself full of food this season:
1- It may not end with the season.
2- Too much food means your body has to work extra hard to digest it all, which leaves less resources for your body to fight back those pesky cold and flu viruses that run rampant during the winter season.
3- You feel gross.
4- Overconsumption is not good for the planet. Why not take a beat between bites, and if you’re not hungry– here’s a novel idea… don’t eat it. 🙂
Now, for the actual list I promised …
Thermogenic foods help to speed up the metabolism, aiding with digestion and calorie burning:
1- Spices; Foods containing ginger and hot peppers (cayenne, black pepper, chili) can help you to feel fuller faster. And the benefits don’t just stop there! Spiced foods and drinks will keep you toasty when the weather gets a little (Los Angeles) or a lot (New York) nippy. Check out this recipe for one of my favorite fiery drinks to snuggle up to!
2- Green tea appears again and again on my list of beneficial foods. The catechins and caffeine in green tea work synergistically to suppress appetite and to speed up the metabolism. Get it in your life now!
3- Proteins. Try a handful of organic almonds or walnuts, a cup of lentils, or some yogurt to jump start your metabolism.
4- Whole Grains. Your body burns twice as many calories when you consume a whole food (ie. brown rice) instead of processed (white rice)!