Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Holidays: Food, Drink, and Diet HELL

The holidays are rapidly approaching- already here if you count Halloween, and I am preparing myself for the inevitable temptation to eat, drink, and be merry. The question is: can one enjoy the Holiday Season without indulging in no-good-for-you food and drink?

Thanksgiving will be spent with my in-laws at a potluck dinner party. I will be bringing candied yams (an old family recipe that calls for yams to be slowly cooked in brown sugar and butter...AMAZING) and my "famous" pumpkin trifle (three layers x's two: pound cake, pumpkin filling, heavy whipping cream, repeat). Not only are both of my dishes AMAZING, but there will be plenty of other appetizers and dinner dishes that will be pleasing to the mouth, but not to scale.

My advice to myself (and anyone else who wants it) is.....PORTION CONTROL. I have mastered the art of small portions in the last year, and I will utilize this skill on Thanksgiving. A plate that is filled with vegetables has little room for much else. So my plan is simple. Find the least fattening thing on the dinner table (usually veggies) pile up my plate with that, and choose one or two items that are not so healthy (but really yummy) and eat half as much as I would want to eat. Eating a small amount of Thanksgiving fixings will satisfy my holiday hunger, but not put me over the top in my calorie count for the day or greatly effect next morning's scale reading.

It is also important to note, food does NOT a good Holiday make. Holidays are about spending time with family and friends, enjoying the feeling of gratitude for life's many blessings, and spending time in reflection of those who have gone before us. Food is merely a catalyst to bring about family discussion and laughter. Eating on Thanksgiving or any other day of the year has to be about nourishment and nutrition. Once I open myself up to seeing food any differently, I can always find the excuse to eat in order to satisfy my cravings and not for the nutritional value it brings to my body.

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