Thursday, October 21, 2010
I've been thinking a lot about the term Winter Fat. I can feel it starting to creep into my life. It's different then Holiday Fat.
For me, especially since I've lost a lot of fat this year, my body has been cold now that summer is gone. Also, the desire for cold salads is no longer with me. I've been craving stews and soups (thick of course).
There are a number of reasons why winter weight happens – one of the largest factors is genetic. We have a tendency to begin storing fat as winter draws near; this is something common to most animals and is meant to help us survive the winter. Unfortunately this was okay for our physically laborious ancestors, but the computer generations have a problem. Our bodies are programmed to crave more food as the temperatures drop. We also tend to crave heavier foods as the winter comes.
Hormonal fluctuations are also a factor in winter weight gain. Hormones and other neurotransmitters have an effect on our appetites. In fact, overweight people often have a deficiency of certain neurotransmitters and hormonal imbalances. Depression brought about by seasonal affective disorder can also influence eating. I've always self medicated against this condition with food, especially high carbohydrate choices. This seasonal depression can lead to overeating, which leads to a self-sustaining cycle of overeating and winter weight gain which can be difficult to overcome.
There are physiological and cultural reasons why we tend to consume higher quantities of high carb, high fat foods in the winter. These foods are a big part of winter weight gain. The best way to counteract this winter weight gain is to eat the high carb foods we crave, but being careful to choose low fat ones, such as fresh fruit, brown rice and wholegrain bread.
And not to minimize Holiday fat.....In a short 12 week period we have at least 3 huge eating Holidays and parties and the sugar and white flour are are in a race as to who can outsell the other...oh and don't forget the butter! Yikes
So, I am going to commit today to take control and make healthy choices and go back to tracking what I eat on Spark. I want this to be the second year in a row that I don't have a winter weight gain...Anyone care to join me?
Love to all,