Finally reaching your goal weight may feel like winning the jackpot—and interestingly enough, most of us seem to be striking it rich in the beginning of fall. It’s not just your imagination, either; a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine recently found that people weigh the least during the first few weeks of October. But don’t get too cozy in your skinny jeans. According to the study, once November arrives, the average American’s weight begins to rise and then peak in December and January. (Festive cocktails and Christmas cookies be damned!) The worst part? All those extra holiday pounds take, on average, about five months to come off, says study researcher and Eat This, Not That! advisory board member, Brian Wansink, Ph.D.
There is some good news, though. Maintaining your autumn weight is totally doable—you just have to plan ahead. To make it happen, Wansink suggests making October the jump off month to resolution season rather than waiting until January. “It’s easier to avoid holiday pounds altogether than to lose them after they happen,” he says
What’s all this mean come the holiday season? Although you can still indulge a bit, skip the sugary cocktails and fill up on lean turkey breast and high fiber foods like veggies rather than heavy things like stuffing and cornbread. And if you just happen to waver from your diet, don’t sweat it! You can undo some of the damage the next day with these 40 Ways to Recover From Overeating.
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