Does the Winter Season Make You Gain Weight?

As the last weeks of fall come to a close, most people are squeezing in as much shopping for the holiday season as they can to avoid the last-minute rushes at their local stores. And. if last weekend was any indication, people are starting earlier this year.

It’s also the start of the holiday season, which means lots of calorie-laden foods, like eggnog, turkey, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, and cookies.

For many, this means weight gain.

Many people also start going into hibernation mode come dropping temps.  They eat heavier foods. They gain (more) weight. They cozy up and hunker down.

There are numerous holiday parties that start after Thanksgiving leading up to Christmas.  Work parties, family parties, drinks with your friends, neighborhood potlucks, holiday gift parties.  The list goes on. And just when you think it will slow down, Christmas arrives, leading you into New Year’s Eve, and topping it off with Valentines Day.

Holy more weight gain!  Continuous months of indulging and mindless eating and drinking.

So, how are you going to handle the arrival of winter?

Fear not. Winter is a great time to detox, leading to the lightness of spring.

Remember to get your vitamin D.  The days get their shortest come winter.  Researchers at Aberdeen University found that obese people had 10% less vitamin D than people of average weight. The study also found that excess body fat absorbed vitamin D so the body couldn’t use it. Scientists now believe that there is a direct correlation between obesity and low levels of vitamin D. With that, get out there, even in the cold, and get your sunshine, if only for 10 minutes per day.

Move your booty and continue exercising regularly. It can be as simple as taking a walk out in the snowy terrain.

Sometimes you may not feel like it due to the cold weather, but hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

Enjoy winter foods. Move toward the more warming winter foods and also emphasize the more warming spices and seasonings including ginger and peppercorns.

Here is a list of the seasonal foods of winter:

Avocado, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celeriac, Celery, Chicory, Endive, Escarole, Fennel, Grapefruit, Horseradish, Jerusalem Artichoke, Kale, Kiwi, Kohlrabi, Kumquats, Leeks, Lemons, Mandarin Oranges, Onions, Oranges, Parsnips, Pears, Persimmons, Potatoes, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Satsumas, Shallots, Squashes, Sweet Potatoes, Tangerines, Turnips, Winter Squash*

Enjoy them all.  Try new things.  Just remember, don’t let the couch lure you into curling up with the unhealthy comfort foods like creamy soups or mac and cheese.

*These were found using the following link, where you can learn more about seasonal produce:  http://localfoods.about.com/od/whatsinseason/a/WinterFruitVeg.htm

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