(To jump ahead to Sunday’s Christmas Passage, click “Keep Reading This Article.”)
It’s a lot harder to gain weight over the holidays than you think! According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the average weight gain between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day is… wait for it…
That’s right, the average adult only gains one pound over the holidays! (Now, it is an important pound – researchers note that this weight gain is not reversed during the spring and summer and probably contributes to the increase in body weight that frequently occurs during adulthood.) But, knowing it’s only one pound (and not the fifteen you imagined) will make it a lot less intimidating to hit the gym and work it off. (Lace up your shoes in January, run a nice moderate pace for twenty minutes, five days a week and you’ll be back to square one by February!)
Don’t believe me? Jeans not fitting? Your problem could be water weight (which is often caused by consuming too much salt, sugar and/or alcohol – all common indulgences around the holidays).
Now, I’m not encouraging non-clean eating (ok, well maybe a little…) – but it is important to maintain a sense of balance, especially around the holidays. Prayers and Apples is all about being happy and healthy – not just skinny. So eat for fuel (not for comfort!) and let go of some of the stress. Remember that what you eat will affect how you feel and have a serious impact on your energy – but also keep in mind that trying one of your grandma’s famous oatmeal raisin cookies won’t kill you either.
So enjoy the holidays and Merry Christmas!
And just for fun – here’s a list of how many of your favorite foods you’d need to eat in one day (in addition to your normal diet!) in order to gain one pound:
Candy canes: 63
Chocolate rum balls: 53
Chocolate chip cookies: 39
Peanut butter kiss cookies: 36
Snickerdoodle cookies: 24
Gingerbread men cookies: 23
Green bean casserole (cups): 19
Classic sugar cookies: 18
Mashed potatoes (cups): 14
Stuffing (cups): 10
Egg nog (cups): 8
Candied sweet potatoes (cups): 7
Pumpkin pie with whipped cream (slices): 7
“Calorie burn calculator.” Health Discovery. Retrieved: 15 December 2012.
Daeninick, E. (November 2007). “Holiday Food Shockers.” Health Castle.com. Retrieved: 15 December 2012.
Martin, M. (14 June 2011). “Calories in a Peppermint Candy Cane.” Livestrong. Retrieved: 15 December 2012.
Sugar, J. (22 December 2011). “Calories in Homemade Christmas Cookies.” FitSugar. Retrieved: 15 December 2012.
Yanovski, JA; Yanovski, SZ; Sovik, KN; Nguyen, TT; O’Neil, PM; Sebring, NG. (23 March 2000). A prospective study of holiday weight gain. New England Journal of Medicine, 342(12):861-7. Retrieved: 15 December 2012.
Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I do not know a man?”
And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.
“Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren.
For with God nothing will be impossible.”
Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.