3 Ways to Prevent Winter Weight Gain
According to the National Institutes of Health, it's a common belief that Americans gain an average of 5 pounds between the end of November and the start of January. Don't fret, here are some ways you can prevent gaining weight this winter!
A study by the NIH revealed that participants don't significantly gain weight between September to mid-November or January to March. But, during a key period between Thanksgiving and New Year's, participants gained about a pound of weight.
Why do you gain weight during the holidays? For one, there are more end-of-the-year parties where you eat to your heart's content. Then, because it's so cold out, you probably feel too lazy to workout. Another reason is you're more stressed during the holidays – meeting deadlines, holiday shopping, and preparing for guests – and stress floods your body with cortisol, which makes you gain weight.
You don't want your hard-earned flat tummy and toned muscles to turn flabby just because of this two-month window, right? Here are three ways you can keep your body fit and lean during the festivities:
Sleep with the heat on low. It's okay if you're too lazy to workout after Thanksgiving dinner – you can lose weight in your sleep! Researchers found that lowering the temperature while you're sleeping causes your body's fat to act like brown fat. Your brown fat actually helps you lose weight because it burns itself to keep your body at a healthy 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit – it burns regardless of whether you're working out or not! Researchers found that participants who slept with the room temperature at 66 degrees Fahrenheit for one month had almost a 50 percent increase in their brown fat volume and a 10 percent boost in their fat metabolism! The participants also experienced lowered insulin sensitivity, which helps prevent diabetes. You can enjoy these benefits too – just lower the heat before going to bed, but don't go too low or you'll lower your quality of sleep, which can make you gain weight.
Step outside for awhile. Yes it's cold out – but step outside, take a short walk, or even build a snowman. Researchers found that your overall metabolism is about 12 percent higher in winter because your body spends more energy trying to keep you warm. You probably won't get this metabolism boost if you spend all day in a cozy heated home with zero cold exposure. Remember to bundle up and wear protective clothing for your ears and hands, which can get frostbite within 5 minutes of unprotected exposure to freezing temperatures.
Take natural weight loss remedies. If you're overweight, your doctor may prescribe you phentermine, which is a pharmaceutical that suppresses your appetite. It helps you burn fat if you exercise and diet while taking the medication as prescribed because you're eating less but ramping up your calories burned. It's also used to help prevent diabetes or diabetes progression. But doctors are quick to turn to liver-stressing pharmaceuticals before advising you to try effective natural weight loss remedies that are good for your body. For example, researchers found that taking a bit of apple cider vinegar diluted in water before eating a meal makes you full faster. Participants ate less when they took a solution of apple cider vinegar before eating. You can also try garcinia cambogia supplements, which have been found to suppress your appetite and boost your metabolism. Both garcinia cambogia and apple cider vinegar are also full of antioxidants, which help protect you from cancer and slow signs of aging.
This holiday season, prevent the festivities and shopping stress from adding inches to your waistline by sleeping with the heat on low, getting healthy cold exposure, and taking natural weight loss remedies. But remember, the best way to keep the pounds off is by exercising regularly and keeping your diet in check this winter season.