HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — With the holiday season there are celebrations that come with foods that lead to weight gain.

Dr. Eron Manusov with UTRGV Health said it is common for people to eat more during the holidays because it consists of numerous get-togethers.

“Food is a comfort to us in our culture and that’s important to us which is great however we do have to be careful,” he said.

While Dr. Manusov said there is nothing wrong with having favorite holiday food, he said people should still control their intake.

“Eating is something we need to do, what happens is we get sort of bound to eating and we do eat too much so one thing you can do is if you like your foods, just eat less of them,” he said.

According to Dr. Manusov, portion sizing will help make healthier choices and allow people to enjoy holiday foods with family and friends. 

Minimizing the intake of sugary drinks like sodas and sweet teas is also something to consider to help lower the impact of holiday gain. 

While weight is something that most people focus on during the holiday season, license dietitian Dr. Andie Lee Gonzalez said we need to also pay attention to other habits that could be playing a huge impact on our overall health

“Am I going to sleep better, am I going to try to eat better? You know, exercise and move more. All of those things are healthy habits that you can try to think about,” she said.

Dr. Lee Gonzalez said looking at the bigger picture in health makes us aware of methods that will help us in the long run. 

As a dietitian, she said it is important to educate people that it is not about prohibiting foods, rather learning how to portion size.

“Is it enough to satisfy my hunger? if it’s extra, then maybe it’s not hunger, maybe it’s out of habit so just really pay attention to those key triggers,” she said. 

Dr. Lee Gonzalez adds people tend to reset their mindset on health in January but the best thing to do is take action now by making small changes. 

“There’s going to be bumps along the road; the best thing they can do is really taking that action on what can I do from now until the end of the year to make better choices,” she said.