Is it common to gain weight in Winter? How to Keep up healthy habits in the cold.Dec 18, 2022
By Sophia McDermott, Lifestyle Coach & Fitness Expert.
We've been experiencing very cold days for a few weeks now, and Winter is officially here. We know that this season invites you to eat more when it comes to food with the Holiday Season as well as delicious rich and hearty stews.
In winter, many people end up ditching the clean eating and choose to eat “winter” foods, such as broths, casseroles, stews ,hot chocolate, fondue, pasta and more. All of these foods are ‘comfort foods’ and are MUCH higher in calories and can indeed increase weight.
But, winter is not to blame for weight gain. This time of year, the metabolism can be faster. With the lower temperature, the body needs to work harder to produce more heat to keep warm, meaning we would be burning more calories during the day. So is weight gain the result of Winter or more about eating rich, calorie loaded, heavy foods, compounded with the choice to sit on the couch rather than battling the elements outside to workout?
For this reason, in Winter some will power is especially important here. In order to maintain a workout schedule and healthy habits we need to stay focused and stick to our guns. Even if the food is not ‘comfort food' and even if it’s dark outside.
So let’s look at some options here that will address the issues of staying healthy and fit in the Winter.
Going outside to workout if you live in an area that is really cold with snow etc, might not be an option. If this is the case, get a gym pass and schedule this like an appointment. Or do a home workout. For super effective workouts, all you need is a mat and a pair of dumbbells. I have a plethora of home workouts in my Membership here
If it’s cold but bearable, try to get outside during the warmest and sunniest part of the day. Brisk walks on your lunch breaks is idea.
We all crave comfort foods as such during the colder months. But there are ways that we can eat foods that are warming and filling without being loaded with calories, sugars and salt.
Les make broths that are veggie based. When preparing a broth, instead of using potatoes and sausage, opt for cauliflower and mushrooms, which will be lighter and more nutritious options.
Skip the cream and cheese in soups, stews and casseroles. Keep it veggie, tomato or mushroom based.
Saute veggies rather than forcing yourself to eat salads. The veggies are warm but crips and full of nutrients.
Teas are also great allies, especially at night when you want to snack. Chai tea is a great alternative to hot chocolate. Green tea is thermogenic so it can boost your metabolism and herbal teas such as peppermint tea are great for digestion and calming you down for a good sleep.
Another very interesting point is that in winter, many people reduce their water consumption, which is a big problem, as the lack of hydration impairs the functioning of pretty much everything in the body including weight loss. It affect digestion and impairs the ability to eliminate rich, salty foods and flush out toxins.
Prioritize constancy and make these small changes to keep you in the game. This is not about restricting everything, but making better choices during a time that can be hard to stay motivated. And always drink plenty of water. Your body thanks you in every season. Remember: your results are a direct reflection of your habits.