Fall is here, the holidays are near and so is the threat of gaining those unwanted Halloween/Thanksgiving/Christmas pounds. So here's a 12-point game plan to help you resist the temptations that lay ahead and avoid fall weight gain.
- Exercise is crucial. Stay active 4-6 times per week, for not less than 30 minutes, and choose high intensity training to keep calories burning long after you're through with your workout.
- Avoid trans-fat which adds pounds to your abdomen, even when controlling dietary calories.
- Be aware of food intolerances and hormonal imbalances, both of which may cause bloating and a low metabolism.
- Substitute alcohol intake with other beverages that have nutritional value.
- Pay close attention to the taste and textures of sweet and fatty foods and opt for healthier substitutes.
- Drink plenty of water to reduce cravings, alleviate fluid retention, aid in adequate waste elimination and improve metabolism and endocrine function. Hydration will also improve liver function which will in turn, increase the percent of fat used for energy.
- Avoid junk foods. Instead, eat colorful, antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables. Antioxidants are anti-fat and help signify fullness. Junk food will cause the anti-fat signals to weaken.
- Drink antioxidant-rich teas such as green tea and yerbe mate, which can be used for fat-burning and abdominal fat reduction. (Note: If pregnant or nursing, avoid yerbe mate.)
- Cinnamon is a warming herb that helps balance sugar levels and control cravings. You can drink it in tea throughout the day, too!
- Eat high fiber foods such as nuts. These help you stay fuller longer and are packed with nutrients.
- Eat predigested meals, such as green smoothies or non-dairy soups (i.e. lentil or butternut squash soup) to create fullness and hydration.
- Breathe deeply and get adequate sleep to put the body in the optimal fat-burning mode. Research shows that nine hours (six 1.5 hour cycles) of sleep are needed for optimal metabolism. Also remember, that you are more prone to making bad food choices when sleep deprived.
A Premier Trainer at Five Seasons in Dayton (and a licensed Zumba instructor), Christa is passionate about using her dance and exercise training to help change lives from the inside out. As a certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine, Christa can help you transform your life by identifying and correcting muscle imbalances and developing a customized program that addresses your specific needs. Christa is here to serve and motivate you to achieve optimal health.