Your Health 11-12-12 Weight gain, stress and the holidays

{}Many of us are already setting ourselves up for weight gain as the New Year nears.

Those of us who turn to comfort food to deal holiday stress{}should take this as a warning.

Stefanie Barthmare, a psychotherapist with the Methodist Weight Management Center in Houston says, "Many of us will gain anywhere from seven to 10 pounds from the middle of October through the end of the year because of all the fatty foods available at parties and other gatherings.{} If you're not careful those numbers could easily double very quickly."

The psychotherapist says all the food does is cause the number on the scale to creep up, causing a whole host of problems with health and self-esteem.

Barthmare says getting to the root of your problems and finding better ways to deal with them without food will help you avoid putting on extra unwanted pounds this holiday season.

Here are some suggestions she offers to cope with stress or problems without turning to food:

Take a walk, call a friend, read a book, join a support group to talk about your problems, or talk to a counselor or dietician to develop healthier coping strategies. #