Americans are going to use the holidays to binge more than usual this year.
In Herbalife Nutrition’s third-annual “Writing off the End of the Year” survey, U.S. respondents admitted they’re pushing off health-conscious habits to 2021. To be exact, 56% of the 2,000 Americans surveyed shared they’re using the holiday season as an excuse to postpone any positive health changes.
And with that mindset, 43% of Americans are planning to break their diet and expect to gain 7 pounds by the time the holidays are over. That’s 1 pound more than Americans expected when Herbalife released its first holiday weight gain survey in 2018.
Due to the global coronavirus pandemic and other stressors, 61% of Herbalife’s respondents indicated they believe they “deserve to indulge” this year.
When it comes down to which unhealthy habits Americans are partaking in, 45% of the survey’s respondents said they’ve eaten so much they have had to loosen their pants while 43% said they have gone back for second servings for meals or desserts in a single day.
Another 35% admitted to having eaten more than three meals in a day while 30% have eaten until they felt unwell and 25% have eaten an extra-large midnight snack. To a lesser degree, 12% admitted they have hidden their favorite holiday foods or treats to save for later.
“The hectic nature of holiday season may be a tough time for many to maintain their healthy lifestyle, but it’s important not to write off your healthy lifestyle goals,” said Dr. Kent Bradley, chief health and nutrition officer at Herbalife Nutrition, in an interview with South West News Service – a British news agency.
“One way to beat the temptations is to eat healthy snacks that are high in protein, curbing the desire to overeat,” Bradley offered as a tip.
By the time January rolls around, Americans are prepared to start over. Sixty-two percent of the survey’s respondents said they’re planning to adopt a “new year, new me” attitude, 39% of which are said to be health-related resolutions for 2021.
The top three resolutions for next year include exercising more (26%), making healthier food decisions (25%) and focusing on self-care (21%).
“Resolutions are a great way to kick off the year on a positive note, but make sure you set achievable goals,” Bradley told SWNS regarding the survey’s findings. “Small and steady changes to your diet and fitness routine are more sustainable and having a community to encourage and celebrate your success with you, even if virtually, can make a huge difference.”
This year, Herbalife added a global component to its OnePoll-commissioned holiday survey, which consulted 1,000 respondents from Mexico, Greece, Bulgaria and Romania each.
According to the survey, Americans overwhelmingly believe they deserve more holiday treats (61% vs. 49% global response) or are making unhealthy decisions (53% vs. 44%) because of how difficult this year has been. Similarly, Americans are adopting transformative health resolutions for 2021 at a higher rate (62% vs. 39%).
Compared to the rest of the world, 59% of Herbalife’s global respondents said sheltering in place helped them make healthier decisions on average.