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Dear Rosanna: 'Every Christmas I lose weight and then come January all of the weight is back on'


Rosanna Davison

Rosanna Davison

Rosanna Davison

Send your questions to Rosanna@Herald.ie

Question: Every Christmas I lose weight in the run up to it and then come January all of the weight plus more is back on. I hate myself for doing this. I feel so good when I get down to a size 12 but no matter what I cannot seem to stay there - I get there for Christmas or summer holidays by trying some awful diet and then gorge myself back to a 14 within weeks. How can I sort my weight once and for all?

Rosanna answers: You face the same problem as so many others, so don't beat yourself up about it. But it seems that you have a problem controlling yourself when faced with seasonal temptations.

We're all guilty of gorging a little bit more than normal at Christmas time, but you can definitely take steps to minimise the damage caused.

Faddy diets don't work in the long-term, and you will always struggle with yo-yo weight gains and losses if you don't address your mental attitude towards food.

My advice is to practise moderation in the run-up to Christmas, enjoy the one day of indulgence on Christmas Day and make sure you get out for a decent walk after the meal.

Then go back to being more disciplined around food for the rest of the festive season.

There's no point in indulging for two weeks solid, as that will definitely lead to weight gain.

Enjoy Christmas Day, get plenty of exercise throughout December, and you won't be faced with the struggle to lose weight in January.



Question: I am constantly anxious - I worry about stupid things every single day. A pal bought me a mindfulness book but it actually made me worse.

I don't know why I am like this but was the same as a child - I always thought my parents were going to die and leave us.

I can't afford professional counselling and my family just tell me to pull myself together.

I now clean my home obsessively and am starting to hate going to work - it feels like so much can go wrong if I leave the house.

Can you give me any advice - I feel like my life is getting out of control.


Rosanna answers: This sounds like you have really allowed your irrational mind to control every other aspect of your life, to the extent that it's affecting your everyday movements and happiness.

We can all worry about things that haven't even happened yet and we all have to die at some stage. But what's the point?

It takes up so much of your mental energy and places stress on your body, making you much more prone to illness.

My advice is to focus on allowing less worry to pervade your mind. Remove caffeine, sugar and alcohol from your diet as they make anxiety much worse, eat a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods, and look at deep breathing and meditation techniques to help calm your nervous energy.

Exercise is another great way to de-stress. Walking and jogging in the fresh air are great options, and it would be worth investigating local yoga classes too.


Question: There are two girls in my office who are always at each other's throats. It's never all out row territory but rather a constant sniping.

I like both of these people but wish that they would sort out whatever personality clash seems to exist between them as their mood seems to set tone for the rest of us.

When either of them has been away on holidays it's just like a different place to work in. Should I say something or hope they'll come to their senses?

Rosanna answers: I'm sure these women are perfectly friendly and professional separately, but obviously they have an unpleasant history together and are making life difficult for everybody else in the office through their constant bickering.

This is unprofessional, disruptive behaviour and it really shouldn't be tolerated any longer as it's distracting everybody else from focusing on their work.

My advice is to speak with your boss or the head of your department, and explain what's been happening and how much it impacts everybody else in the workplace.

I would suggest that the women are either separated or given a stern warning to quit their sniping at each other or face the serious consequences.