Holiday parties, gourmet meals, and celebratory dinners can easily get a little (or a lot) more decadent than you expected. Let’s face it: Everyone blows his or her calorie budget every now and then.
Do you need to worry? Is that old dieter’s saying, “a moment on the lips, forever on the hips” really true? And what should you do next?
WebMD asked medical experts, registered dieticians, and weight management specialists about the damage done by one-time splurges and their tips for getting back on track. Here’s what they recommend, whether you’re looking to maintain your weight or lose some extra pounds: Relax (For a Moment)
The good news is, one meal is not going to ruin you if you eat sensibly and exercise regularly the rest of the time and get back to your routine, experts say. You need to eat 3,500 calories to gain one pound of body fat, so it’s unlikely that a single overindulgence will show up on the scale, experts say.
“We call these ‘taking time-outs,’ and we all take them,” says Rebecca S. Reeves, DrPH, RD, assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. “No one is perfect in their eating habits. What we have to learn is that we are giving ourselves permission to do this, and as soon as it’s over, we should go back to the eating plan we normally follow. This does not give us permission to continue to overeat and binge.”