The holiday season is tough. I get it. As a nutritionist I’m also tempted by the decadent desserts and teeny tiny appetizers. Shortbread, wine, mini meatballs, chocolate covered almonds all lined up and ready to be consumed. And consume we do! Like many others, I too have woken up January 1st with an extra 5lbs of pudge around my midsection and wondered why I didn’t have more self control. So like I said, I get it.
So like you, I also need strategies to keep me aware of my actions. Now I’m not expecting sainthood here, simply a more present, in the moment mindfulness about the actions you make during this exciting time of year will do.
So here are 3 strategies I use to ensure I don’t leave a party feeling like a beached whale:
- Fill up before you blow up. We all know what the results of utter gluttony feel like. Where you have eaten everything in sight simply just because it was there. It’s almost like a demon takes over and even though our bodies are begging for mercy, we keep going. Fast forward an hour and we are on the couch with the top button of our pants undone (hoping no one will notice) and attempting to take a deep breath and vowing never to eat so much EVER AGAIN! My Strategy: have a small snack or meal before you hit the party. Trust me on this one, you will be way less likely to overindulge because your blood sugars are balance and brain has been politely informed it’s satiated
- Trick or Treat. We’ve all been in those situations where others around us get annoyed when we don’t partake in the gluttony, especially the wine. I firmly believe this stems from a guilty conscious-others feel bad if they are indulging and we are not. My Strategy: If I have had enough but don’t want to say no to drinks and risk the wrath, don’t tell anyone, but I bring sparking water with me everywhere. This allows me to make a “vodka soda” (sans vodka of course) without anyone being the wiser. Tricky right?
- Make it too difficult to indulge. My goal here is 3-fold. Create as many obstacles between me and the goodness as possible. My Strategy: Chew gum- do you really think you are going to grab a gob out of your mouth in public just to stuff in something else? Keep your hands full. Hold a drink, a camera a plate of veggies- just keep your hands busy, I promise this works! Lastly, location location location- don’t stand front and center to the treats you love the most. You are less likely to mindlessly much if your poison of choice is on the other end of the room.
Remember, this time of year can be challenging. Figure out what works for you; do your best and don’t beat yourself up if you do slip a bit. Just use it as a learning experience for next time.
I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and happy and healthy 2016!