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The Happy Holiday Eating Plan

Dr. Janine Darby
Don’t want to gain 10 lbs. during the holidays? Follow Dr. Darby’s healthy eating tips.

by Melissa Jacobs

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Can we enjoy the holidays without gaining 10 lbs.? Absolutely, says Dr. Janine Darby, founder of Lifestyle Changes, a physician-led, virtual, weight management and corporate wellness practice. Dr. Darby, an award-winning physician, is double board certified in family and obesity medicine. Her 12-week group weight loss program launches Nov. 9 and will help participants achieve and maintain their goals through the challenge-filled holiday season.

Dr. Darby

“The name Lifestyle Changes encapsulates my belief about weight loss,” said Dr. Darby. “This program changes the way people think, eat and move. That leads to success in maintaining weight loss.” How? Dr. Darby gave us a sneak peek at what she’ll be teaching during the program.

MLT: Many people indulge during the holidays and pledge to lose weight in January. Is that a bad strategy?

Dr. Darby: Definitely. During the holidays, people can gain a lot of weight if they aren’t mindful about their eating and drinking. But people also need strategies and support so that they don’t overindulge. That’s why I’m starting the group program on Nov. 9. This way, people can get their mindset right for Thanksgiving and the December holidays, and be on track for their January goals.

MLT: What is emotional eating and why is it so prevalent during the holidays?

Dr. Darby: It’s when people use food to deal with their feelings. When they are happy, they may eat and drink more. When they are sad, they go to their comfort food. But overeating actually makes them feel worse. It’s an unfortunate spiral and difficult to break. A group dynamic like the Lifestyle Changes program can really help.

Dr. Janine Darby

MLT: Does alcohol make us gain weight? Abstaining from alcohol is hard to do during the holidays.

Dr. Darby: You can drink alcohol – but be mindful about it. Red wine has some health benefits, but it also has calories and sugar. Prosecco, vodka and tequila have fewer calories. But most people add sugary mixers that increase the calorie count. Drinking them straight is better. And as with everything, moderation is key.

MLT: Being the only dieter at a holiday celebration is tough.

Dr. Darby: I give people strategies for dealing with that. First, connect with someone at the party who will keep you accountable. It’s not someone slapping your hand. It’s that they will help you stay on track. Also, eat a small meal before you go. And, instead of waiting to see what is served, bring a healthy dish that you know you can eat.

MLT: Lots of people try to diet alone. Why is it important to have group dynamic?

Dr. Darby: We are social creatures, and support, accountability and coaching breed success. Many people have issues with their weight. The group is a safe space to have honest discussions and dive deeper into our struggles with weight, health and wellness.

Dr. Darby

MLT: How does the program work?

Dr. Darby: It’s a 12-week program based on mindset, meal planning and movement. Each meeting is one hour, and all meetings are virtual. We talk about why people are overeating, and I teach them about macronutrients, micronutrients, sleep, exercise and a range of health-related topics. We have group discussions, and each person has four one-on-one sessions with me. We also have a chat feed to share our wins and challenges – and recipes and food pictures.

Ready to enroll in Dr. Darby’s Lifestyle Changes group weight loss plan? Use code MLT when you register to save $100 and get the 12-week program for $670 (including Lifestyle Changes 6-month Wellness Journal).


Dr. Drarby

Great Gift Ideas!

The Lifestyle Changes Wellness Bundle ($29.99) includes the 6-month Lifestyle Changes Wellness Journal, Lifestyle Changes Bookmark and Lifestyle Changes Pen.

The Lifestyle Changes Gift of Wellness ($150) includes a 45-minute Wellness Consultation with Dr. Janine Darby plus the Lifestyle Changes Wellness Bundle. 


About Lifestyle Changes: Lifestyle Changes by Dr. Janine Darby is a physician-led, virtual, weight management and corporate wellness practice. Double board certified in family and obesity medicine, Dr. Darby is a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University and Temple University School of Medicine.

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Want more wellness information? Read Dr. Darby’s guide to weight loss, then get the latest info on must-try treatments at Brooke Alexandria, the new spa in Haverford.

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