We are beginning to wrap up 2023 and the holiday season is right around the corner. That being said, we need to discuss a subject that is uncomfortable for many of us. I want to take a few moments to ask everyone to be mindful of our physical activity and how we eat during the holidays. Just because it is hard to talk about doesn’t mean we should ignore it.

It’s no secret that holiday eating can lead to some scary weight gain. Overeating during Thanksgiving and Christmas can even lead to blood sugar problems and other medical issues because we make poor choices about what and how we eat.

In Eastern Kentucky, we tend to spend a lot of time with our family, especially around the holidays. Many of us are expected to attend multiple family gatherings, which are usually centered around food. Added to that are work parties and other get-togethers, which can lead to temptation that is hard to resist. Let’s face it, we like to eat, and we like to eat food that tastes good.  Humans naturally love the taste of salt, fat and sweets, which will be seemingly everywhere over the next several weeks.

This holiday season, try to avoid things you know are going to tempt you to eat more than you should. Make a point to eat smaller portions and don’t be afraid to stand up and physically walk away from food when you feel tempted to continue eating. If the weather is tolerable, invite a friend or family member to take a walk.

Although it’s not as easy to do, I encourage my patients to make healthier choices and eat foods high in fiber, fruits and vegetables. Eating these foods will fill you up and help you avoid the more dangerous foods we all know and regrettably, love.

I need you to understand, especially around the holidays, that exercise truly is the “magic bullet.” We don’t like hearing it because it is hard to do, but if you exercise regularly, you will be able to keep those extra pounds away.

Please remember that if you do end up gaining some weight over the holidays, do not beat yourself up. All that does is increase the chance you will continue to gain weight.

If this is you and you feel you are ready to make a big change, we are here for you. Feel free to come to the Center for Bariatric and Minimally Invasive Surgery at Pikeville Medical Center and see us. You can talk to a dietician, a member of my staff or me. Together, we will explore what options are available to you. Call 606-430-2205 or scan the code provided to learn more.

Have a happy and healthy holiday season,