Every where we go this time of year there is food. We are enjoying pot lucks at work and church. We are snacking at parties on pretty appetizers. We are attending dinner parties and celebrations that all have food! It all smells wonderful, looks delicious and we are eating well above what we would normally every day this month.
In addition to over-eating and indulging what we are eating is also usually high in calories, fats, sugars and salts. Not that any of these things are bad per se when we are using them as a treat or the occasional reward but day after day they can start to take a toll. It is very common to hear of people feeling uncomfortable in the waist area all through the holidays.
Not Just Our Usual Bad Diet
It is not a secret that the average American has a horrible diet filled with processed and preservative laden fake foods. Throughout the year we eat some things that are just not good for us and are questionable if they are even worthy of labeling as “food.” Hello Processed American cheese in individual wrappers – do we really know what that stuff really is? I am fairly certain it is not cheese.
So January through October we are eating these things we don’t think are actual foods and then the holidays come along in November and December where we further compound our bad diets. Granted what we eat over the holidays is at least likely to be more homemade and contain some real food ingredients it is also heavy in the sugars, salts and fats. If we were eating better all through the year then this wouldn’t be such a big deal to indulge in over the holidays but the simple truth is we are not. We just add it on top of the normal stuff we eat and say that we will deal with
it in January. But 99% of us won’t.
I’m not saying don’t enjoy grandma’s homemade cake and gingerbread men because these are seriously special and fabulous but… we have to do more than just wait for January before we take some actions. In many ways our desire for hyper-level convenience and right now have to attitudes have resulted in us forgoing the logic of our brain that tells us we can do things differently. I get that sometimes our schedules are crammed and well fast food it is for dinner. My schedule is constant go status so I totally understand it. However, I also recognize there are times that it is just “easier” or less of a bother than pulling out pots and pans. There are just other things I’d rather do than meal prep or cook.
If Not Now Then When
In the age of time where obesity is on the top 5 diseases impacting our health I say it’s time to bring back the control so we can get our health back. It may sound absurd but I think the holiday time is the perfect time to start. Not January when we are worn out from the holidays or trying to regain momentum in normal life but right now.
Right now among the gingerbread men, casseroles, stuffed dishes and decadent treats is our prime opportunity to declare our health freedom. When I apply this to my own life this is how I think that looks:
Meal balance to include some freshness
Saying no to processed and preservative filled foods and anything that isn’t actually a “real” food
Enjoying the treats that I really love and passing on those that don’t fill me with joy
Being realistic about when it’s ok to do convenience and when I’m just making excuses
Saying no when you're really just not that hungry
The biggest part too is not punishing myself, making myself feel bad or guilty if I do over do it. We cannot go for it and then berate ourselves about how we shouldn’t have done that. It’s ok to have grace with ourselves and appreciate that this is not a battle won at just one meal or snack. This is something we need to change overall and that starts with realizing how badly our food systems are broken and starting to transition ourselves to better options.
In all the diets and exercise programs out there if one worked well for everyone we wouldn’t be having obesity as one of our highest diseases. The truth is we each need to figure out what works best for us and work within reason to apply to our lives every day, year round, even during holidays.
When we start at the holidays we are actually building up the endurance to be successful in January and beyond. We’re not making excuses or delaying it any longer but truly freeing ourselves from the bonds of food and especially foods that don’t serve us body or soul. I’m sorry but homemade holiday cookies are good for our soul because they are made with love. That’s my two cents about that anyway.
For the times though that I am truly weak at will power and temptation is overdrive around me I have learned to recognize peer pressure eating and emotional eating are likely the cause. We must change our relationship with food to make celebrations that involve food serve us and add value to our gathering versus being a reason to engorge and feel awful later. Let’s change that and make it an actual celebration that uplifts us and makes us feel great afterwards.
This is in my purse this holiday season and I admit I’ve used it more than once to have the will power to say no to some pretty delicious looking goodies. Give it a try:
In a 10 ml roller ball bottle add these oils and fill rest with fractionated coconut oil. Apply to stomach and heart as needed.
4 drops doTERRA Pettigrain
4 drops doTERRA Melalueca
3 drops doTERRA Ginger
3 drops doTERRA Clove
2 drops doTERRA Wintergreen
To order the oils and supplies for this blend simply click here: dragonspitapothecary.com/temptation-protector