Why winter is a bleak time for dieters: 69% of us eat more in cold weather

From last Sunday, each day is shortening by around 2 minutes as we slide towards winter. Cold, miserable days can have a significant impact on weight loss as calorie intake tends to increase when the weather takes a turn for the worse.

A survey by calorie counter App, Nutracheck, has revealed that 69% of members said they ate more in the winter months.

Nutracheck nutritionist, Emma Brown MSc, says: “Our members are not alone; studies show that seasonal weight gain can kick in with people consuming around 200 more calories a day more as the days shorten. Keep that up and when spring comes around, you could add find yourself carrying an extra half a stone.

“Winter weight gain is largely the result of reduced exercise, interruptions to workout routines, party food and drink and a greater desire for comfort foods, so this year, be prepared for the season with our five-point plan to beat winter weight gain.”

1) Never go to a party hungry

When we eat outside the home, studies suggest that we take in 40% more calories than we would otherwise. An environment with lots of food and alcohol choices is very tempting – so be on guard and have a high protein snack before you go. Peanut butter on a slice of wholemeal toast is a great choice – low in calories but full of protein to keep hunger at bay.

2) Be alcohol aware

Alcohol is loaded with calories – empty ones at that (no nutritional benefit). And since many holiday celebrations involve drinking, it’s easy to consume a lot of calories without being aware that you are. Drink a glass of water or a diet soda before and after each alcoholic drink to help pace yourself and dilute calories.

3) Limit calorie damage 

If you do overeat one day, it’s not a reason to keep overdoing it for the next few days. The quicker you draw a line, the faster you’ll minimise the chance for weight gain.

4) Exercise where you can 

It’s hard to drag yourself out in the evening when it’s dark and cold, so try to get your exercise in during the day (and make the most of the weekends). Take a walk in the morning or at lunchtime – just 30 minutes a day at a moderate pace is enough to burn an extra 100 calories. Or try a fitness DVD from the comfort of home.

5) Comforting food doesn’t have to be calorific

Stews and soups are great warming meal choice when made with chicken and lean beef with plenty of fresh seasonal veggies. These have a high water content and are low in energy density which means they provide plenty of volume to fill you up, but without the calorie tag.

About Nutracheck: www.nutracheck.co.uk 

  • Nutracheck.co.uk can double weight loss. It’s the UK’s top rated diet website and the top selling calorie counting App in the UK Apple store.
  • Super-fast and easy to use, the App keeps track of your daily calorie intake. Add foods in just 2 clicks using the barcode scanner.
  • Nutracheck’s unique food search has product photos to help you easily spot what you ate from the 180,000 foods in the database.