London, Dec 4 : With the holiday season just round the corner, it can be really difficult to lose weight, thanks to the unending parties, exquisite dinners and alcohol. But now, dietary experts have offered few tricks that could help you keep a check on calories while enjoying the festivities.
Ursula Arens, spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association has said that on average, people gain 5 lbs (2 kg) in the four-week Christmas period.
"Trying to lose weight at this time is totally ridiculous and socially unpleasant. You just need to aim for stability," The Telegraph quoted her as saying.
Arens said that one could cut calories in Christmas meal by choosing white turkey meat, removing the skin (saving about 50 calories per portion) and stacking high the unbuttered veggies
"The overall average weight gain works out at just an extra 500 calories a day," said Elisabeth Weichselbaum of the British Nutrition Foundation.
And that is the equivalent of a mince pie and a few extra glasses of wine.
The dieticians advised that drinking wine instead of cocktails or creamy tipples such as Baileys can help to keep things under control in parties, considered to be the major calorie hotspots.
Also, one could swap each alcoholic drink with a glass of water. Adding fizzy water to white wine for spritzers that last longer makes sure that you do not take in extra calories.
Weichselbaum said that endless "nibbles" during parties could be disastrous.
"You can easily consume the equivalent of a whole meal just in canaps," she said.
She advised sticking to the one handful rule (one handful of crisps or nuts, then stop) when it comes to snacks.
Also, she recommended staying strict with canaps- avoiding those with creamy toppings or pastry bases. Just pick one or two others, and then stop.
Rather than gorging on those mega-sized tins of chocolates while watching TV, Arens said that it's better to go for "a glorious sweet eating time" once a day where you open the tin, scoff a few, then put it on the top shelf until the next day.
Arens said that to avoid gaining weight, flick the pie- flick off the top of your mince pie and you lose a third of its 240 calories.
"One flick of your finger cuts a third of the calories without impairing your enjoyment," she said.
And don't forget to work out this Christmas season-Christmas shopping or party-going can involve a surprising amount of walking.
Just half an hour of brisk walking burns off about 200 calories it is possible to erase the rest of that mince pie in a single trip out.
"For maximum weight management you must first find your perfect walking pace. Start walking, then once you're warm try to increase your pace until you are just about to break into a jog. This is your personal breakpoint. Your optimum walking pace is 5-10 percent less than this "breakpoint" between a walk and jog," said fitness expert Joanna Hall.