Scottsdale Weight Loss Center’s Dr. Rob Ziltzer Dishes Out Some Weight Loss Tips

The holidays are the time to connect with family and friends, which means more parties, more food, late-night shopping and a lot less sleep.

After the festivities are over, you open your closet to find that all of your clothing has magically shrunk, and the days to achieve your beach body are slipping through your fingers.

Make your New Year’s resolutions easier by preventing holiday weight gain with some advice from Dr. Rob Ziltzer of the Scottsdale Weight Loss Center.

Q: What can be done to maintain one’s weight over the holiday season?

A: I’m a strong advocate of making changes now to prevent the weight gain.
The average person puts on four to six pounds during the holidays and that’s for a number of reasons. There are many more meals and in-between meal food opportunities, whether it be holiday meals or buffets, more cocktail parties, or cookies that people bring into work. All of those things ultimately mean more calories eaten.

When you compound that with people being out more and sleeping less, sleep deprivation also leads to weight gain. Getting a full seven to eight hours of sleep can help burn the equivalent of 400 more calories.

Q: Do you have suggestions for healthier options or substitutions if you are hosting a party or dinner?

A: Skewered beef, chicken or shrimp kabobs are going to be much more filling and nutritious with far fewer calories and carbs. If made properly, deviled eggs are a good choice because they are filled with protein.

If you are making cookies, you can use apple sauce instead of oil or butter. It changes the flavor a little bit, but it will certainly reduce the amount of calories. Personally, I recommend you eat a really good cookie you really like and just eat less of it.

Q: Alcoholic beverages are known for empty calories. With the increase of holiday cocktail parties, do you have any suggestions for low-calorie options?

A: One important fact is to stay well hydrated. Instead of having two alcoholic drinks back to back, have a glass of water or a diet soda in between. You will reduce your overall amount of alcohol intake. If you really want to drink, light beer is the best choice followed by wine.

Q: What do you think about pre-mixed, low-calorie drinks such as the Skinny Girl Margarita?

A: It only has 110 calories and five grams of sugar. Less sugar means fewer calories, so that’s actually a good choice.

Q: What do you suggest if people overeat or have too many rich items during a meal?

A: Prevention is key. Once you’ve overeaten, it’s too late. Don’t go into a meal hungry. We recommend pre-loading. Have a small meal, snack bar, a salad or 16 ounces of water before you get there.

Listen to your body. We use the 1-10 hunger scale — 10 being famished and 1 being totally full and bloated. Start eating when you are a 6 or 7, and stop when you are about a 4. Then, you will feel satisfied.

Q: The holiday rush usually means skipping exercising. Do you have tips to help boost energy and maintain weight without exercise?

A: Simply wearing a pedometer to track how many steps you are taking can be really effective. Try to do something every day, even if it’s only for five or 10 minutes. Take a brisk walk, go to the gym, or go dancing — anything to get you moving.

Even doing housework counts. It doesn’t mean you have to go to the gym if you are busy. If you are cleaning, preparing for a holiday party or putting a tree together, those are all physical activities and should be counted.

For more information about the Scottsdale Weight Loss Center:

Scottsdale Weight Loss Center
9989 N. 95th St.
Scottsdale, AZ 85258
(480) 366-4400


Scottsdale Living Magazine Fall 2011