The One Weight Loss Rule Nutritionists Never Break During the Holidays

In gearing up for the happiest time of the year, your cheer might be derailed by the thought of [...]

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(Photo: Country Living)

In gearing up for the happiest time of the year, your cheer might be derailed by the thought of holiday weight gain. You might think of the holidays as a black hole of packing on pounds, but some studies suggest most weight-conscious people only fluctuate one pound. However, people already overweight typically gain closer to five pounds.

Greatist spoke with top nutritionists who shared details on the one thing they do to stay healthy during the holidays. Practicing even a few of these tips will keep you mindful, balanced and on track.

"Eat what you love, leave what you like." - Lindsay Joe, Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist

Stop mindlessly piling your plate with things you aren't crazy about. If you aren't actually drooling over the pecan pie or loaded mashed potatoes, then leave it. Pick only the foods that make you squirm inside, and then enjoy yourself.

"Don't eat something just because it's holiday food." - Justin Robinson, Registered Dietitian

Do you really like eggnog so much that you have to down three glasses before 2 pm? Is pumpkin pie your absolute favorite dessert on earth and you look forward to it all year long? If not, then be a little picker with what you fill your calorie count with and don't waste it on foods you're just enjoying because that's what people do this time of year.

"Eat low to high (when it comes to calories)." - Deborah Orlick Levy, R.D., Carrington Farms Health and Nutrition Consultant

Start with a salad, then go to the healthier meat and up the ladder. At dessert, you'll be happy and satisfied enough that a bite or too will be all you need.

"Drink half of your body weight in ounces of water." - Ashley Pettit, Certified Holistic Nutritionist, Fitness Chef and Personal Trainer

You know how easy it is to confuse thirst with hunger. Just commit to this rule for the holidays, pay attention to how much better you feel when you're hydrated and not stuffing yourself like the Thanksgiving bird and then keep this best practice as part of your routine.