With holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s so close in dates, it would seem nearly impossible to maintain a healthy weight - but it can be done.

Although indulging in large family meals during the holiday season can be customary, there are a few tips one can heed to ease through the holidays without weight gain.

According to a press release from Thom King, president of Steviva Brands, some of those tips include:

do not try to lose weight during the holidays expect the holidays to be a challenge because they are filled with potential pitfalls that will erode the discipline get support for eating properly by finding a support partner and speak with them daily light be cognizant of family issues let family members know that you are trying hard not to succumb to holiday weight gain and ask for support

Along with other stress factors, emotions can play a part in overeating and weight gain, according to the press release.

Almost all overeating is due to emotions and this rings true regarding holiday “pigouts.” Holidays bring up feelings of loneliness, family conflicts, past hurts and resentments, anger and many other painful emotions. These stressors combined with the easy availably of comfort of food can lead to the perfect weight-gaining storm.

Making sure local residents are up to speed for the holidays and are aware of the potential for weight change, Baylorworx coordinator Diane Anderson explained the importance of understanding and applying specific tips to getting through the holidays.

“Remember there are only three holidays in a six-week period — Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s - and everything in between should be limited celebration eating,” Anderson said. “Using a salad plate rather than a dinner plate for portion control is one way to maintain a healthy weight. Also, do not pick up a plate at first sight of a buffet dinner.

“Check out the food and decide on three items you must simply taste,” she said. “Fill the plate with veggies, fruits, lean protein, nuts and then a small sample of must haves. Take three bites of veggies, fruit, lean protein or nuts and then a taste of the must have. Repeat until the plate is empty. By doing this, you’re eating the good stuff first and still have room for your little treats.

“When going to a party or a social gathering, have a small portion of a dessert and tell people that you are on a diet plan,” she said. “Let them know that everything looks fabulous, but that you are full. You have to teach people how to treat you.”

Gaining weight isn’t what everyone enjoys and Anderson stressed the importance of weight maintenance.

“Knowing the maintenance of your current weight is OK during the holiday season,” she said, saying that people are always seeking ways to maintain a healthy weight. “People are always interested in learning how to do better and how to lead a more healthy lifestyle. Questions about this are asked year-round, not just during the holiday season.”

E-mail Chicarra at chicarra.dense@waxahachiedailylight.com