We just finishing the Summer Holidays but we are already start the presents for Christmas and in anticipation of the feasting you'll be doing over the next holidays, you may wonder if going on an extreme diet is necessary. The truth is it may actually do more harm than good in the long run.
We use to think that if we lost more weight before Christmas, then the weight we'd gain on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day during the feasting would mean no weight gain overall, because it would have balanced out. We have to realistic and that is wrong and that consistently eating healthily is better than any crash diet. While you should always consult with your doctor no matter what you choose to do, here are the practical reasons to avoid an extreme or strict diet and to stick to your usual healthy eating habits this holiday season.
Think about how you feel when you're on an extreme diet: hungry, a tad grouchy and constantly thinking about what you can and cannot eat. You can be left feeling deprived. You may not look forward to any meals, and you may even feel a bit down, especially if you don't see any results. Now think about how you feel around Christmastime, when you're supposed to be in high spirits, Christmas shopping and decking the halls. If the holiday season tends to overwhelm you, adding an extreme Christmas diet of very little calories and little to no carbohydrates will add to the stress. Skip the strict rules, and stay consistent with your healthy eating habits instead.
If you're considering going on a diet with a high calorie limitation, think again. A prolonged extreme diet will not only leave you feeling hungry all the time, but your metabolism will naturally slow down to protect your body's energy sources so that you don't starve. We all know a fast metabolism is key in weight loss, so slowing down your metabolism will actually have the opposite effect in the long run. When you finally get off your crash diet and start eating normally again, your metabolism will have to readjust to start burning your food more efficiently.
There are always other options you can try instead of the extreme diet. If you're in a rut on the scale, try adding a few more workouts to your week instead of feeling miserable on a diet where you're practically starving yourself. The extra workouts mean extra calories burnt, extra opportunities to tone up and extra endorphins a very good thing. If you feel better eating more protein and less complex carbohydrates, then choose meals with higher protein that will still fill you up, like a grilled chicken breast and salad, instead of the whole wheat pasta with extra cheese.
You know the feeling: The minute you get off a horrible diet, you can't wait to eat everything edible in sight. You hunger for the foods you missed, and mixing this hunger with Christmas treats will most likely lead you to overeat. Binging on extra sugar is not only unhealthy for your body but will undo any of the weight loss you might have accomplished with your strict diet to begin with, and all that pain would have been for nothing.
Whatever you try doing, it's all about balance, even during the holiday season!