Why do we do this? Why do we eat more in the winter months?
Well, it is a common belief that fat keeps you warm. And according to Ahmed Ahmed, consultant gastrointestinal and bariatric surgeon at Bupa Cromwell Hospital, this is wrong.
‘Those who carry excess weight actually feel colder,’ he says.
‘When you put on fat from excess calories it is white adipose tissue; the only fat that keeps you warm is brown adipose tissue, which babies have and which is due to genetic programming.’
Perhaps it comes from ancient times, when food was scarce during winter. As this is no longer the case, this excuse seems to be valid no more.
Perhaps it has something to do with hormones?
Melatonin, the hormone triggered by darkness that makes us feel sleepy, can also have a role in appetite.
‘In spring and summer, levels of melatonin decline, but in autumn and winter levels of melatonin increase,’ says Dr Perry Barrett at Aberdeen University, whose research specialises in seasonal weight gain in mammals. ‘This hormone acts on appetite.’
In most mammals, this increase in melatonin reduces hunger — a strategy to deal with diminished food resources. But in some species the same system produces opposite effects, so it’s possible this could account for increased hunger and weight in humans. Well, it’s a good excuse anyway.
Or maybe it has something to do with our levels of happiness.
Professor Craig Jackson, head of psychology at Birmingham City University, says: ‘In winter, we tend to develop a lower level of happiness, called ennui. This is basically low level dissatisfaction, which we get when it’s cold, wet and dark.’
He adds that studies show that when we’re suffering with ennui, we use comfort foods as a pick-me-up twice as much as usual.
‘In winter, we go for energy-dense, calorific foods, which tend to be sweeter or fattier,’ says Dr Barrett.
The problem is that these high-sugar snacks will inevitably lead to a sudden drop in blood sugar levels, leaving you craving more energy. You then get into a rollercoaster of highs and lows — and store the surplus calories as fat.
Inevitably it will become summer again, and we will try to squeeze into swimsuits, realise that the flad has built up and seek short term solutions to fix the problem. This might result in yo-yo dieting, which will have negative effects on our health.
The solution? It starts right now and right here. You have to start doing something today in order to improve your lifestyle. Eating the right foods in the right quantities is the first step. exercise is the second. And to make a mindset change, you may even need hypnosis.
At Hypnosis Works!, the hypnosis practice based in Pretoria, you are now given the opportunity to get to grips with your weight issues once and for all. By taking charge of all aspects of your weight, you can start building that lovely, slim and trim summer body.
I am offering a series of 8 sessions that will deal with all aspects of weight management at a subconscious level. It does not matter how much weight you want to reduce, you can now start doing it with comfort and ease, just by making a few crucial changes. I will hold your hand and guide you every step of the way, helping you overcome those hurdles that you have fallen over before.
And I will even throw in a 9th session absolutely free if you book within the next 7 days!
Usually the complete program costs R 4250, but if you book and pay in full before the end of June 2013, you will save a massive R 1250, as you will only pay R 3000 for the sessions. That works out to only R 375 per session! And you get the 9th session absolutely free!
So what are you waiting for? What excises are you going to make? How long are you going to wait?
Just imagine yourself when the warm days of summer return, and you are slim and trim, healthy and fit, the envy of your friends and family!
Contact me today for more information about the program and to book your space!
Email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or call my cell 083-379-2489.
I look forward to hearing from you!