avoiding weight gain

Your Guide To Avoiding Weight Gain During the Holidays

November 20, 2023

The holiday season is a time for joy, family, and, of course, delicious food. While it's a season of comfort and cheer, it's also a notorious period for weight gain. If you're concerned about maintaining your health during the festivities, you're not alone. This guide will assist you in avoiding weight gain during the Holidays without compromising your waistline.

Setting Clear Goals

Before the season kicks off, sit down and define what "success" means to you. Is it maintaining your current weight, sticking to a workout routine, or avoiding certain high-calorie foods? Clear goals will help guide your choices throughout the season.


Tell someone you trust about your holiday health goals. A friend, family member, or co-worker can serve as your accountability partner, reminding you to stay on track and offering emotional support.

Portion Control

Holiday meals often feature a buffet of delicious options. Instead of loading up your plate, choose smaller portions of your favorite dishes. This will allow you to enjoy a variety of foods without overindulging.

Learn to Say No

With holiday treats at every corner, it's essential to master the art of saying "no." Politely declining seconds or skipping the dessert table entirely is okay. Your health goals are important, and it's alright to put them first.

Stay Hydrated

Drinking water is crucial, especially if you're consuming salty or sugary foods. Water can also help you feel full, making it easier to avoid overeating.

Mindful Eating

Take time to enjoy your meal, savoring each bite. This practice helps you become aware of your body's hunger and fullness cues, making overeating less likely.

Beverages Count, Too

Holiday beverages like eggnog and mulled wine are laden with hidden calories. Opt for lighter drinks or stick to water to minimize liquid calories.

Don't Give in to Cravings

Sugar cookies might call your name, but giving in to every craving will sabotage your goals. Instead, have a healthy snack like fruits or nuts at hand to curb your appetite.

Don’t Skip Meals

Skipping meals to save calories for a holiday feast will only make you overeat later. Keep a regular meal schedule to maintain metabolism and control hunger.

Eat Lots of Protein

Foods rich in protein keep you full for longer. Include lean meats, legumes, and dairy in your meals to combat hunger and encourage muscle growth.

Stay Active

Engage in physical activity even when the schedule gets hectic. A brisk walk, a quick workout session, or even dancing at a holiday party counts.

Stay Focused

Above all, remember why you set your goals. Keep your eye on the prize, whether it's better health, a fitter body, or simply feeling good about yourself.

The holiday season doesn’t have to spell disaster for your health goals. With a little planning, accountability, and focus, you can enjoy the festivities without the extra pounds. Make this holiday season a time for celebration, not regret.

There you have it—a comprehensive guide to navigating the holiday season and avoiding weight gain without compromising your health. By taking these steps to heart, you'll be well on your way to a happier, healthier New Year.

Nikhilesh Sekhar MD, FACS, FASMBS currently practices at New York Bariatric Group


Nikhilesh Sekhar MD, FACS, FASMBS currently practices at New York Bariatric Group and has performed thousands of WLS procedures including Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass, Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy and Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding. He also has background performing laparoscopic Nissen, laparoscopic inguinal and ventral hernia repair, laparoscopic colectomy and laparoscopic lymphadenectomy. Read more articles from Dr. Sekhar