What is it about Winter that leads to excess pounds?
Is it the darkness, coldness, or the enhanced desire to hibernate…definitely all of the above!
The darker, shorter days can definitely makes us feel lethargic and more sedentary. The lack of exercise due to inclement weather, or darkness can certainly dampen our active routines. Also, depending on where you live, the absence of vitamin D from the sun can increase weight gain by hindering fat breakdown and increasing fat storage. Extra indoor time can also lead to increased snacking or over-eating on the wrong foods!
Here are 5 solutions to combat the winter weight gain, you can start right away!
Fiesta Fit Soup:
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small red onion, chopped
1 organic red pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon mild chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
salt and pepper (to taste)
8 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
1 can (14 oz./398 ml) no-salt-added diced tomatoes
2 cans (14 oz./398 ml each) no-salt-added black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup organic corn kernels, thawed
4 cups lightly packed organic baby spinach
1 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
1 lime, zested and juiced
Fresh coriander, chopped (optional)
Heat the olive oil in a large pot set over medium-high heat. Add the onion and red pepper, sauté for two to three minutes or until softened. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for one minute. Stir in six cups broth, and the tomatoes, bring to a boil. Stir in the beans, and corn. Boil gently, partially covered and stirring occasionally, for 12 minutes. Stir in the remaining broth, the spinach, jalapeno pepper, lime zest and juice. Remove from the heat. (Add extra broth and lime juice to adjust consistency and acidity to taste if desired). Garnish with fresh coriander (if using).
Makes eight servings. Enjoy!
Janet Brancato is a Registered Dietitian based out of Glen Rock, NJ. She works with clients online, over the phone, and face to face.