Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Brides-to-be vow to trim down for big day

Here comes the bride and chances are she’s been on a diet. Whether it’s a wedding in June or January, losing weight before walking down the aisle is a top priority for over 80 percent of brides-to-be, according to a Fitness magazine poll of 1,000 women.

“Everyone will be looking at her that day and she is striving to be the perfect bride,” said bridal stylist Jessica Hancock of Winnie Couture in Buckhead. She advises even the most enthusiastic dieters to be cautious when choosing the size of their wedding dress.

“Since gowns have to be ordered six months in advance, brides do not have the option of waiting until they are at their ideal weight," Hancock said. "We always recommend brides order the size they are at the time of measuring. We never recommend ordering smaller. It is too risky. You can always take a dress in to fit your body, but a dress cannot always be let out.”

A six-month or often a year-long time line to plan for the big day offers plenty of time to lose weight gradually and safely.

“This is a highly motivated group. But I recommend brides-to-be make a vow to lose on average a pound a week,” said dietitian Robyn Flipse, author of "The Wedding Dress Diet." “Unrealistic goals and crash diets make for tired brides who are dehydrated with wrinkled skin and dull lifeless hair. You want to look beautiful in those photos, right?”

Flipse, whose book was published ten years ago, says it’s been rediscovered in the wake of the world’s attention to Britain’s Royal Wedding.

“I have to thank Kate Middleton for getting married," she said. "There’s brand new enthusiasm for the book and I owe it all to Kate.”

Pre-wedding weight plan

The book is cleverly laid out as a course in good nutrition and good sense, specifically designed with a bride’s weight goals and the unique challenges she’ll face along the way to her final fitting.

“There are often many functions thrown in a bride and groom’s honor from luncheons to showers to surprise parties," Flipse said. "What if you were going to work out and all of a sudden, ‘Surprise!’ It’s hard to stick to a fitness schedule.”

To help navigate a party buffet, Flipse recommends using a small sized plate, choosing a lean protein such beef tenderloin and filling the rest of the plate with veggies and one serving of a whole grain food such as a small whole wheat roll. She cautions brides not to starve themselves.

“It will only backfire on you and you’ll eat more later," she said. "And if you make sure to include a lean protein choice at breakfast, lunch and dinner, you won’t feel hungry so you can avoid unplanned snack attacks. Beef isn’t just for boys. It gives brides protein, iron, zinc and other nutrients needed to stay strong during this often pretty stressful time.”

In sickness and in health

While the first focus may be the fit of the dress, dietitian Ashley Koff, who is a consultant for the CW network show "Shedding for the Wedding," said, “It was a rare bride who only had her eyes on the wedding day. They were focused on this as the time to make life changes so that their new life with their partner would be a healthy one.”

Flipse said, “The difference between a decade ago and now is that brides and grooms are both focused on fitness and setting up a healthy kitchen. It’s their food world, not a his-or-her diet thing. They’re both doing the cooking and shopping and making decisions together such as, ‘Will we eat organic? How will we feed our kids?’ Planning their new life together means planning food and fitness goals too.”

Wedding diet planners

The perfect dress: Size doesn’t matter as much as a proper fit and style. “Once they try on gowns, they sometimes realize what they want is not always what looks best,” said Hancock. “The bridal stylists become close with our brides and they usually share with us what part of their body they are worried about. We are then able to give them recommendations to make them look and feel their best.”

Tailoring Tip: Hancock said, “Brides do not realize that five pounds will not make a difference in the fit of the gown. A significant amount of weight needs to be lost in order to downsize one or two sizes.”

Showtime!: The day of the wedding is like the opening of a Broadway show, said Flipse. “You don’t want to come down with a cold," she said. "Eating a variety of healthy foods not only helps you reach your fitness goals. It keeps your immune system running strong.”

Lose five pounds fast: Flipse said women often overlook the instant streamlining effect good posture can have on a figure. “Hold your head high, your stomach in and walk with confidence," she said. "It elongates the torso.” Of course, this tip works for the bridesmaids, the mother of the bride, the mother of the groom and wedding guests as well. Didn’t Kate Middleton’s posture-perfect mother, Carole, look absolutely smashing, too?

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Gloria said...

Healthy eating is important!

Carolyn O'Neil said...

Thanks Gloria!

Carolyn O'Neil said...

Let me know if you have trouble posting comments
or Twitter


Anonymous said...

Comment Test:Say "I do" to a healthy lifestyle.

Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. said...

Great tips! I am now passing this on to all my friends getting married this summer and fall

Robyn said...

So glad you grabbed my new tag line, "Beef isn't just for boys."

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