How to Lose Packed-On Holiday Pounds

Now that we've rung in the New Year, the tough reality is that many of us face extra holiday pounds, packed on thanks to cookies, cakes and other goodies.

Good Morning America's fitness contributor Jim Karas, a weight loss expert who wrote The Business Plan for the Body and Flip the Switch, joined GMA to help three viewers, in their 20s, 30s and 40s, shed 10 holiday pounds in one month. To lose weight, you must follow a plan and mentally believe that you can do it, Karas said.

"If you tell your mind you are going to lose weight, your body will follow," Karas said. "Remember, body and mind work in tandem."

Here is Karas' advice for those trying to lose post-holiday weight at home.

Diet Dos and Don’ts

1. Eat three medium-sized apples a day, one before each meal. Apples are packed with fiber, and they also have a high water content, meaning they are ideal in making you feel full.

2. Consume at least one full cup of broccoli each day. Research indicates that consuming 600 milligrams or more of calcium — roughly the amount in a cup of broccoli, or a 1/2 cup of cottage cheese suppresses calcitrol, a hormone that signals fat cells to make more fat and burn less fat. Suppress the hormone and you make less fat, and burn more. Plus, the first fat will come off of your midsection.

3. Include two servings of either cottage cheese or yogurt in your diet each day. A serving is 1/2 cup of cottage cheese or one small 100-120 calorie yogurt. Don't go for fat-free versions. A little fat will help keep you feeling full.

4. You must record everything that you eat and the caloric value of each item. Record all foods consumed, the portion size, plus the caloric value of each item. The key is to read labels. Begin by looking at the number of calories per serving and the servings per container. Use a food scale, measuring cup and spoons if necessary to determine how many servings you are consuming. Totally avoid the following foods:

1. All pasta — most people overeat pasta and therefore, it should be avoided. 2. Big retail bagels (200 calorie Lender's bagels are fine) and all bread in restaurants. 3. All soup, except the Heartland Stew in Flip The Switch (see page 158) or a low calorie/low sodium canned option.

4. All salad dressing — Instead, use balsamic vinegar or fresh lemon, which tastes great. Beware, even low fat salad dressing contains many, many calories per small serving. 5. All liquid calories such as juice, soda (you may have diet soda), sports drinks and alcohol — this includes wine. 6. Avocado — Did you know that avocado is 90 percent fat and loaded with calories? Yes, it contains the good fat, but it is still too many calories for our plan. 7. Olive Oil (which is 120 calories per tablespoon), butter (which is 108 calories a tablespoon) and any other added fat, such as mayonnaise. 8. Fast food: The only exception is when you know the caloric value (e.g., a McDonald's regular hamburger is approximately 280 calories or some of the new salads, minus the dressing and croutons would be fine).

1,100 Calories a Day

Here is what you should be eating:

1. Lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. Frozen fruits and vegetables are also fine. 2. Low-calorie bread (Did you know that English Muffins are only 130 calories?)

3. Lean protein such as tuna, white meat chicken or turkey, fish, egg whites, cottage cheese and yogurt.

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