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Cold Weather and Appetite

Cold Weather and Appetite

Everyone knows that we tend to put on weight during the holidays. Most of us then spend the rest of the year trying to take it back off. This constant struggle with body weight can be stressful and is the basis for a multi-million dollar industry designed to try to help us lose weight.

Why is it that we gain weight during the cold winter months? The answer is instinct.

Our bodies are designed to adapt to changes in our environment. Throughout history, our bodies have learned that winter is a time when food is often scarce. Therefore, we instinctively eat more during the Fall and Winter seasons in order to store energy for times of food scarcity. Our brains don't know that food is readily available in these modern times of abundance.

It also doesn't help that Thanksgiving and Christmas are times of overindulgence of food and drink!

The key point to take away from this is that we have to manually override this instinct. We know that we are no more than a few hours away from our next meal, even though our brains do not. If you can understand and control this instinct, then weight gain over the winter months becomes less of an issue.

Easier said than done, I know!

Here are a few tips to avoid winter weight gain:

  1. Try to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day at the same times
  2. Have a healthy snack between meals to help avoid over-eating at meals
  3. Drink plenty of water to aid in digestion and fill the empty space in your stomach
  4. Take a multi-vitamin, and make sure to get plenty of Vitamin D and Magnesium - this helps your body use the nutrients you give it more efficiently
  5. Avoid sugar at all costs
  6. Stay away from fast food restaurants
  7. Make sure your carbs are healthy carbs - fruits, vegetables, and whole grains -  this helps keep your glycemic index low. High glycemic index stimulates your brain to seek more sugar!
  8. Exercise regularly
  9. Remember that it is virtually impossible to gain weight if you are only eating meat, fruit, and vegetables

I have used these techniques for the past several years to keep my weight where I want it to be. However, I occasionally indulge in surgary desserts and eat fast food and watch to pounds increase. Every time this happens, I just start using the tips I listed above and my weight quickly returns to normal. Give it a try, and see for yourself.

I'm here to help, if weight loss is your goal. Give us a call and set up an appointment for nutritional counseling, where I can help you put together a plan that will work for your body's individual needs.

Thanks for reading my blog.

Here to Help,

Dr. B

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