A big winter appetite applies to almost every individual, no matter which corner of the world you may be living in. Somehow cold weather gets to the best of us, not just in terms of falling sick faster but it also contributes to the sudden outbursts of hunger pangs in our tummies which do not go away for a long while! Many people report being hungrier in winter, with stronger cravings and an increased urge to snack. According to Vitality magazine, one of the reasons for this could be that winter season makes our body temperature drop, hence making us want to eat more. The problem, however, is that if you respond to this temptation by devouring high-sugar and high-fat foods, you’re going to cause a spike in your blood sugar levels followed by a dip which will leave you feeling colder and hungrier than before, causing the entire cycle to start again. Are you a victim of this? We all are! Here is how you can reduce the risk of putting on weight as we approach chillier months.
- Increase your vegetables Who does not love eating cheesy lasagna, tacos and thick-patty beef burgers? We all do! But while you are at it, the best thing you can do for yourself is cut a quarter-plate full of vegetables that you can munch on while eating your main dish. The trick it that without knowing, you will end up consuming almost half of the cheesy and other weight-gaining calories than you would have if you did not have some greens on the side. Tried and tested, it works magic!
- Make your own meal Get rid of the eating out habit. Instead, opt for home-cooked meals in order to be able to keep a tab on your calorie intake. If you prepare your own dinner you will know exactly what is going into your food, which will help you to make healthier food choices and control portion sizes at the same time. “Cook more and be in control of your food. This is such a simple way to rein in your diet,” Huffington Post quotes nutritionist and celebrity chef Bingley-Pullin as saying. A simple example would be to make your own spicy pastes because the ones sold commercially contain a generous amount of added sugar and preservatives in them.
- Get some physical exercise We have all been there and we know exactly how lazy winters can make one feel. However, it is extremely essential to get some form of physical exercise in everyday in order to balance out all the extra calories you may have eaten during the day. Most people prefer to remain indoors when it is freezing outside, so the best form of exercise would be running up and down the stairs for 30 minutes at a stretch, skipping or performing yoga at home. For those of you who are social butterflies and love being outdoors, a morning run or a heated swimming pool at a club would be your best bet!
- Don’t forget about water It’s not just you, it’s all of us! We all tend to feel less thirsty during cooler months and complete chuck water out of our lives for a bit. The truth is that this is extremely harmful for you and will add to your weight gain. Drinking enough water is just as important in winter as it is during summer, says Bingley-Pullin. Drink at least 1.5 to 2 litres of water daily to help with metabolism and keeping appetite in check,” he notes.
5.Look for healthy snacking options
We all love comfort foods like chocolate, baked desserts and creamy pasta but there’s a way to make all these healthier, adds Bingley-Pullin. “If you feel like crumbed fish, use an almond meal or coconut flake crumb. If you want a creamy curry, use thick yoghurt. If you want a warming dessert, use fruit as the base – for example, poached pear or roasted apple.” You can always work around things because when there is a will…there is always a way!