Not only are most people mad in their everyday escapades during the Fall and Winter holiday season, but they are just as mad when it comes to their holiday diet as well. In fact, most people’s diets get worse during this time of year.
There is a proven connection between food tastes and emotions. There is a direct correlation between weight gain, emotional imbalance and food consumption.
What is it about the Winter holiday season that makes our emotional states change? Why do we eat so much during this time of year? Is it because of energy? Or does it have something to do with commerce, or perhaps custom?
How to avoid feeling depressed during the holidays
There are things you can do to keep your spirits up, which will help you make smarter, healthier food choices:
- Listen to upbeat music
- Keep your expectations realistic-you’re going to enjoy some parts of the holidays more than the others
- Make time to take care of yourself. Schedule a massage, or take a long hot bath with your favorite book. Meditate. Do anything that helps you stay centered and balanced during a hectic holiday season.
- Make a list of what you’re grateful for in your life.
- Make a list of what you’re proud of.
- Ignore holiday TV commercials. Them telling us it’s the happiest time of the year can actually create sadness or depression if we don’t emotionally agree that it is, in fact, the happiest time of the year.
- Spend time outside, even if it’s a short walk around the block. Getting out of the house has a big impact on how we feel.
- Avoid tough situations. If a family member who’s known to cause problems wants to stay with you, let them know that it just won’t be possible and give them suggestions for affordable hotels near by. Don’t get drawn into petty arguments. If you feel that some one is trying to pick a fight, simply walk into another room and find something (or someone) who makes you feel better.
- Volunteer your time to a local charity. Giving back uplifts the spirit and helps put things into perspective.
- Lower your expectations. There is no such thing as perfection, so the “perfect” holiday isn’t likely to happen. Just roll with the changes and accept that the holidays come with very little control.
- Say ‘no’ to at least one holiday party invitation and instead spend quiet time with your family or on your own.
During the holiday season, many people become emotionally unstable and they indulge in unhealthy foods.
Holiday dietary madness begins with Halloween and all of the candy that is basically 100% sugar, the number one drug on the planet. Sugar profits are highest during these particular holidays.
So the first attack during holiday dietary madness begins with the sugar hit during the Halloween season whereby we honor the dead, ghoulish, sinister, and macabre.
Next up is Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving puts a major hit on people. Most will eat between 2,000 and 4,000 calories in one sitting. It’s a lot of work for the mouth, stomach and colon to process all of that food we eat at Thanksgiving dinner. No wonder most folks fall asleep after eating Thanksgiving dinner.
People really get off into some madness and dietary madness during the Christmas season. Christmas madness encompasses turkey, eggnog, chocolate and candy, alcohol, fruit, nuts, pastries, and just about everything else.
Some healthy alternatives to traditional holiday foods are:
- Only eat appetizers featuring fresh fruit and veggies and are free of any glaze, marinade or sauce.
- Avoid all sauces and gravies
- Prepare steamed wild rice instead of stuffing or dressing baked inside the bird
- Mash sweet potatoes or cauliflower instead of traditional mashed potatoes
- Don’t eat the crust of the pumpkin pie
- Use olive oil instead of other cooking oils
- Leave room on the plate. If you can’t see the plate under the food, you’ve over served
- Eat breakfast and a light, healthy snack at lunch. Drink an 8 oz glass of water about 20-30 minutes before eating. This will help you from over eating.
Holiday Foods Hall of Shame
These foods are notoriously bad choices during the holidays:
- Swedish meatballs-up to 400 calories per meatball
- Eggnog-up to 350 calories per measured cup
- Pot roast-up to 280 calories per 3 ounce serving
- Fruitcake-up to 410 calories per serving
- Pecan pie-up to 500 calories per slice
- Cheesecake-up to 700 calories per slice
- Candied yams-up to 410 calories per serving
- Cranberry sauce-up to 400 calories per serving
- Yorkshire pudding-up to 625 calories per serving
- Prime rib-up to 750 calories per serving
- Hot buttered rum-up to 400 calories per serving
- Yule log-up to 420 calories per serving
- Starbucks Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha-up to 540 calories in a Grande size
- Sugar cookies-each cookie can have up to 200 calories (before icing is applied)
- Beef Wellington-up to 710 calories per serving
- Cinnamon rolls-up to 730 calories per serving
Post-holiday cleansing can help set things right. Dherbs recommends:
Thank you for reading!