8 Ways to Avoid Excess Winter Weight with the Right Foods
Winter can be an incredibly bleak time of year when you’re not looking forward to holiday celebrations. But even the holiday joy can cause problems for dieters, when the cold weather begins to disrupt a carefully honed workout routine, and makes the temptation to reach for comfort foods more powerful than ever.
Those darker days and longer nights can even lead to stress and sadness that prompts over-eating, or over-indulgence in fattening foods. This is why you should have an elliptical machine or a treadmill in the home right in front of your flat screen. You can watch your shows (The Good Wife and so on) or sporting events (the Patriots or the Lakers losing) while losing calories. Now you can enjoy that pumpkin pie a little more since you know you have an answer for it!
Although the details surrounding seasonal weight gain will differ from one person to the next, plenty of surveys have shown that in winter, most people gain anywhere between five and seven pounds. So which foods can you eat that will help you avoid the winter blubber, and keep your summer shape even as the temperature starts to drop?
There are few better options for breakfast on a cold winter’s morning than a delicious bowl of hot oatmeal. Mixed with fruit, or even just by itself, oatmeal is a tasty and convenient way to start the morning with a healthy dose of phytochemicals and nutrients. At the same time, you’ll also increase your chances of feeling fuller for longer, and running on long-lasting energy for a larger portion of the day. According to some studies, people who regularly have oatmeal for breakfast generally consume less calories at lunch by up to one third.
2. Meyer Lemons
Lemons may not seem like a particularly wintery food, but Meyer lemons – a cross between an orange and a lemon, could be the citrus boost that helps to super-charge your metabolism. According to research that was conducted in Connecticut at the University of Bridgeport, the amount of d-limonene found within this particular fruit can help to improve the function of your liver significantly, as well as removing toxins that generally slow down the metabolism by as much as 30%.
3. Sunflower Seeds
Looking for a healthy and nutritious snack? Sunflower seeds might be the ideal option, as they’re a fantastic source of folate, protein, and vitamin B. What’s more, chewing on a handful of sunflower seeds from time to time can help to add an extra layer of protection to the immune system – something that can be particularly useful during the winter, when the threat of cold and flu lurks everywhere. These tasty seeds are packed with vitamin E – which helps to support healthy hair and skin, prevent cell damage, and reduce the chances of suffering from certain cancers.
4. Chicken Broth
Nothing says winter quite like a delicious chicken broth – and this food is an ideal staple to have on hand throughout the winter months. You don’t even have to eat it by itself. Instead, you can replace cream and butter with broth when making mashed potatoes at home to save on fat and calories!
5. Dark Chocolate
Although you may not need much of an incentive to chow down on some extra dark chocolate – research is constantly showing just how fantastic this treat can actually be for our health. Remember that losing weight can become impossible if you force your diet to be too restrictive, and dark chocolate in small amounts can help to satisfy your cravings without leading to too many excess calories. At the same time, you’ll get all the benefits of a treat packed with antioxidants.
Whether you’re a fan of low-fat meat or veggies, chili can be an excellent, and healthy winter warmer food. You can look for recipes online, or create your own concoction with a combination of greens like spinach and broccoli for a filling meal that isn’t overflowing with calories.
A super-food that’s available all year round, tuna comes packaged, frozen, canned, or fresh, and delivers a healthy source of lean protein that is great for your heart and amazing for your waistline, while still being packed full of omega-3 fatty acids. At the same time, you can use tuna to create summery recipes for the winter that remind you of sunnier days – perfect for when you start to feel the bleariness of winter creep in.
Imagine winter without turkey – it’s almost impossible to do. It is like thinking of the New England Patriots without cheating, the Yankees without buying their championships, or the Lakers receiving the NBA’s help to win another championship. That is just reality! Fortunately, turkey is stellar for weight loss, when eaten at dinner or lunch, and it aids in the release of tryptophan for improved sleep. Studies have shown that better sleep leads to better calorie burning and weight loss. But remember to just avoid throwing it in the deep fryer to cook it!
About Benjamin Roussey Benjamin is from Sacramento, CA. He has two master’s degrees and served four years in the US Navy. He enjoys sports, movies, reading, and current events when he is not working online.