Hey everyone! Now that your Thanksgiving dinner has digested and you have started to deck the halls it is important to note that this is the time of year when diet and exercise plans start to take a back seat to holiday parties and "just one more..." holiday treat. I get it. There certainly are a tremendous amount of temptations already around us every day without adding to the stress by invoking tradition and the guilt for not wanting to make a bad situation worse by having just one piece of pie or a few more cookies.
If you have an eating plan, and that is what we all need to get through life under normal circumstances, it can all go out the door come the holiday season. My solution and the one that I recommend the most is to just do your best to stay full. At this time of year the best thing you can do for yourself is to stay stuffed full of healthy foods that you know are good for you, like potatoes, beans, peas, lentils, all kinds of vegetables, brown rice, oatmeal, thick vegetable stews and chilis, etc. Your goal this month is to stay so stuffed full of the foods that you are supposed to be eating that there will be only minimal room for your absolute must have favorites of the foods that you know are not going to be helpful or even worse that you know you will regret eating. Stay full. Before you go to parties, fill up. Before you go out to eat, pre-eat.
These are the steps you must take to ensure that you do not end up in a situation where there are limited to no healthy options, there are social pressures coming from every direction and the stress of trying to fit it and keep up with all of the joy of the season can just destroy all of your best laid plans. Do your best to share the joy of the season in non-food related ways when possible, with decorating and shopping and crafts instead of baking and cooking. If you do find yourself making traditional cookies and pies, try to do this only with company present and have a few bites and then get these goodies out of your house as soon as possible. If these items are in your house they will be in your mouth before you know it.
The holiday season can be very stressful and there is so much pressure to participate in every activity and experience. Take the time to really enjoy the company, the parties and the joy and beauty of the season itself and don't spend any time beating yourself up for occasional slip ups. After all, we are only human. Stay well and I will be in touch again next Sunday night