By Mark Richards, CMT
The holidays are just around the corner and the myth out there is that the average person gains 5 to 7 pounds during the season. Good news, that’s not exactly true! For those of us who may be overweight, we do stand a chance to gain up to 5 pounds during the winter months. But studies show that for many who are closer to their goal weight, the gain is typically only a pound or so.
If you are considering a preemptive strike on weight gain this holiday season, here are some examples of foods that may help you maintain your weight or even lose a few pounds:
- Black beans – high in fiber and packing 15 grams of protein per cup, black beans can fill you up without filling you out!
- Oats – a perfect breakfast item in the winter months, oats are also high in fiber and can boost your body’s metabolism and help you burn fat.
- Avocados – high in protein and fiber, this fruit has oleic acids which may actually suppress your hunger. And avocados are full of the healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs).
- Salmon – a lean source of protein, salmon is also high in MUFAs! In a 2001 study, people who eat a diet high in MUFAs lost an average of 9 pounds!
- Blueberries – a cup of this super fruit is only 80 calories and 4 grams of fiber. But try and avoid them in a cobbler!
- Broccoli – only 30 calories per serving, broccoli is an awesome vegetable to add to your meals. Nice and filling, it is also very high in fiber.
- Brown rice – an alternative to white rice; brown rice can boost your metabolism help burn fat. Serve it with salmon for a hearty complete meal!
- Pears – pears have 15% of your daily fiber allowance, but leave the skin on because that’s where all that fiber goodness hangs out!
- Wine – high in resveratrol, wine can actually boost your calorie burn for up to 90 minutes! But who really needs another great reason to head to Napa or Amador County?
- Grapefruit – has a compound that can lower insulin, a fat-storage hormone. It’s also a great source of fiber, and because it’s 90% water, it can fill you up without the added calories.
There are definitely some other great food choices for maintaining and losing weight not mentioned above. Add the following to your grocery list as well: almonds, lentils, green tea, bananas, eggs, dark chocolate, oranges, low-fat milk. Primarily, what you are looking for is foods high in protein and fiber, but low in calories and unhealthy fats. Good luck with your weight maintenance/loss goals this holiday season!