1) Ditch Poverty Mentality – In my last post, I talked about using skillpower instead of willpower to eat well. We may be tempted to want to eat a lot during the holiday season because we fear missing out on such great food that isn’t around every day of the week, but is that really true? Is it that hard to make a turkey dinner? And what about dessert? What meal or type of food is that hard to get a hold of in this day and age? Try to curb that poverty mentality by remind yourself that you can always take some home or make some another time to beat the January/February blas.
2) Don’t eat the Memory of Taste – We also may be tempted to want to overeat, believing that we just can’t get enough of that taste, but did you know that as our hunger diminishes and becomes satiated, our taste buds become less sensitive. After a time we are only eating the memory of taste—literally. If you want o eat dessert go for it. Just remember that to truly taste food, you need to eat it slowly.
3) Visualize – Visualization has been shown to be effective in increasing white blood cell count among cancer patients, reduce blood pressure and cholesterol and even regulate hormones. Before you leave the house, visualize yourself making healthy choices, putting your fork down between meals, eating till you feel satiated and energized instead of stuffed and sick. The more details and the more specific you can be, the more effective your visualization will be. Visualization is used by athletes, celebrities as well as CEO`s and politicians to achieve goals.
4) Honour your Body – Our digestive system is likely the most abused part of our body. Overeating creates a whole array of health problems that reach far beyond obesity and cholesterol. For some, making a point to honour their body and digestive system and treat it with love and respect helps them to make more mindful decisions
5) Be Realistic – Is it reasonable to as yourself to eat perfectly, perfect during the holidays? Is it too much to ask yourself to not allow one bite of sugar? You know your limits. Allow yourself small indulgences. Don’t define your worth by how well you restrict. Focus on mindful indulgence.
6) Forgive Yourself – Nothing keeps you trapped in the cycle of overeating like beating yourself up for not being perfect. Do the best you can and enjoy the food that you do eat–even if you do binge. I have great intentions myself at the moment, but I am quite prepared for the reality that I may very well eat beyond satiation when faced with my mother’s amazing turkey dinner. Regardless of what I do I’m not going to taint a great meal with guilt. There is no point in eating tasty food, topped with guilt, self-loathing and shame.
Be Well, Be Mindful and Happy Holidays!