The holiday season is officially upon us as we approach the end of the year. This joyous time of year is filled with family gatherings and parties with friends. These celebrations are often filled with delicious food and drinks. Overindulging on these snacks and beverages can cause you to pack on a few extra pounds if you are not careful. These are the four best ways to avoid gaining weight this holiday season.

Go Easy on the Sweets

Few things are more tempting during the holidays than cookies and desserts. Unfortunately, these treats are loaded with sugar and empty calories. It is going to be nearly impossible to avoid the sweet treats altogether this holiday season, so it is important to eat in moderation. Stick to one dessert at each gathering and limit your sugar intake the rest of the time.

Limit Alcohol Intake

You will find alcoholic beverages at almost every holiday celebration. While these drinks are a great way to enhance the party, they are also loaded with unwanted calories. Limit yourself to one or two alcoholic drinks at every party. Reduce your caloric intake even more by using club soda or tonic water as your mixer instead of sugary juices or soft drinks. Limiting alcohol will also help you avoid excessive eating while your impulse controls are down.

Continue to Stay Active

The holiday season can be a very stressful and busy time in your life. Exercise is bound to be one of the last things on your mind as you try to navigate your hectic schedule. There are plenty of ways to keep your body active without finding time to hit the gym. Shopping and cooking are popular holiday activities that help burn calories. You can also entice the family to play football outside instead of sitting around the television after eating dinner.

Get Plenty of Sleep

Getting a good night’s sleep is a vital part of maintaining your weight during the holidays. The body uses calories as fuel, so it will naturally crave more food when you are sleep deprived. Your body will also burn more calories sleeping than it does sitting on the couch. Find a way to get at least seven hours of sleep every night.