Home' Army News : February 2nd 2012 Contents Army February 2, 2012
Shed the holiday cheer
Lighten up, the holiday's over. Cpl Melanie
Schinkel tells you how to get back on track.
IT'S an all too common tale. All
year we eat well, manage a regu-
lar fitness regime and then it's
Christmas, New Year and holiday
time and all our healthy habits soar
out the window.
Before we know it we're back at
work and we're still carrying the extra
kilos as a result of overindulging.
Exercise, of course, was out of the
question during December/January.
We were far too busy relaxing and
socialising with family and friends to
fit that into our schedules.
Regrettably reality's bite hurts
when we get back to work and wonder
how we managed to stack on 5kg in a
matter of weeks.
Fortunately, practising dietitian
Tiffany Peddle of the Duntroon Health
Centre has some simple and safe tips to
help us get back on track.
Ms Peddle said weight gained dur-
ing the holiday season was caused by
increased energy intake (from food)
and less energy expenditure (less
"Any excess energy from food,
measured in kilojoules or calories,
is stored as body fat and reflected as
increased body weight," Ms Peddle said.
"Preventing weight gain is the key
because it's far easier to gain weight
than lose it. Remember, it's what you
do most of the time, not some of
the time that counts."
She said the most successful
and sustainable way to lose weight
was through a balanced diet and
regular physical activity.
"Weight loss of up to 1kg per week
is recommended for long-term weight
loss success. Quick fix or fad diets
are not sustainable and weight gain is
inevitable once normal eating resumes.
"Easter is usually the next blow out
holiday after Christmas, so I recom-
mend three simple strategies to bal-
ance your energy intake and expendi-
ture -- plan ahead, monitor your food
intake and implement portion control."
Plan ahead for regular meals and
snacks every day and aim for set meal
times including three main meals and
up to three snacks depending on your
hunger level. Avoid skipping meals
and spontaneous snacking.
Never go out without a plan. Set
boundaries or rules as to what you
will eat and drink. For example, limit
your alcohol intake, share your des-
sert, choose an entrée meal instead of
a main and order it with salad or veg-
etables, not chips. If you're travelling
for work or holidays, don't rely on fast
food. Be self-reliant, where possible,
by packing healthy snacks and drinks.
Keep a diary
To increase awareness of your eat-
ing habits, keep a daily food diary.
This will help you identify areas you
need to work on.
There are a number of programs,
websites and apps, such as My Fitness
Pal, that can assist in tracking your
intake. Non-hungry eating is a common
factor in weight gain and often a result
of boredom, stress or cravings. Once
you identify the problems you can
develop strategies to overcome them.
Consume a balance of the five food
groups to ensure you don't miss out on
nutrients that are vital to good health.
Extras such as alcohol and foods that
are high in fat or sugary need to be
limited in your meal plan because they
provide little nutritional value but are
very high in energy.
For more information on recommended daily
servings refer to the Australian Guide to
Healthy Eating on http://www.healthyactive.
Is that on the list?:
Keeping a food diary
will help you work out
what's naughty and
Photo by LS Paul Berry
Be mindful of your
meal and snack
Listen to your
hunger and satiety
Eat until you're
satisfied -- never
Good portion sizes for
lunch or dinner are:
Half a plate of veg-
etables or salad.
Quarter of a plate
of lean protein
such as red meat,
chicken, seafood or
quarter of a plate
such as rice, pasta
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