Holiday Foods can seem like a fantastic time to treat ourselves. But over the last few decades, it seems that the guilt around enjoying holiday foods drowns out the enjoyment.
Have you ever wondered why so much of the foods we eat over the holidays is rich and full of sugar? For centuries, all those foods were not easily accessible and not readily available. That is why they became such a special treat.
Nowadays, we hear more messages about over-indulgence, not eating too much, all of which creates more of a sense of guilt and insecurities around enjoying our meals.
The act of eating is special, and especially eating together. It is a social activity that can bring joy across all the senses – the visual stimulation of a richly, beautifully laid table, the sounds of the family or the friends coming together, the smells of all the rich and varied foods, the tactile elements of the crackers, nice napkins, finger foods and everything else that we touch throughout the meal, and not to forget the taste! The taste of all those different foods, many of which we don’t taste at another times. And the combination of all those senses come together to create a unique, emotional sensation.
When we spend more time hearing and reading that we ‘shouldn’t’ have this, that or the other, and that over-indulgence is a problem, then suddenly those holidays become associated with negative emotions and we spend more time of the year, worrying about the negative impact than the time spent enjoying the holidays.
Just enjoy your holiday time:
Why not turn this round? Look forward to the holiday seasons and the festivities. Look forward to enjoying all those special foods that you don’t normally have. Imagine yourself 100 or 200 years ago and how special it would have been to have access to so much meat, dairy and sugar products. And remind yourself and anchor in yourself the knowledge that once all the food has been eaten, you are going back to eating ‘normal, everyday foods’. And then make sure that your normal, everyday diet is made up of healthy foods.
Guilt gets in the way and is extremely unhealthy as it causes our bodies stress. By avoiding stress, you are already reducing the negative impact of rich holiday food. And if you can fully enjoy all the foods available during the holiday season, savour every bite with that knowledge that this is a special time in the year, you can then go back to enjoying a normal, healthy diet with the same degree of satisfaction and commitment.
If you want to see someone else’s opinion on the subject, check out this article about the psychology of eating.
So, don’t set yourself some date to get going. Eat up the left-overs over the next few days and make the most of them. Just make sure you then stop buying sweets and other self-indulgent foods and run a leaner, fresher, healthier kitchen.
Your purse will thank you as much as your health will!
To a happy and healthy New Year or you all…
Would you like some help going forward? It takes a little support sometimes to help us implement changes, so if that is what you’d like, here is a link to one of my 1-2-1 sessions: Make a Change