|Food Patterns During the Holiday Season; BE A GROWN UP
Hi guys. MJ Here.
It’s no wonder we tend to over-indulge during the holidays! For most of us, spending time with our families is one part lovely and one part stress/anger/jealousy all rolled into one. We may overindulge during dinner because we are enjoying the company and the food. Then, that irritating Uncle Jerry mentions the fact that you didn’t make the tiny tot gymnastic team because you were too “chubby” and suddenly you find yourself polishing off 2 desserts and then sneaking into the kitchen later to eat the rest of the pumpkin pie while you seethe over that one little comment!FIRST ask yourself what food patterns were common practice in your household growing up. Was food considered a form of reward or punishment? Was it a complete social activity or competition? Were there power struggles? Was there always more than enough, or did you have to elbow your siblings out of the way if you wanted to eat enough to be full? Were you forced to clean your plate?If food was used as reward or punishment
when you were young, you will likely see food in the same light as an adult. i.e.- “I have worked hard all day, I am going to treat myself to some ice cream” or the opposite- “I have been eating so poorly lately, I am going to eliminate white sugar for the rest of my life.” Why does this harm us? Well, just notice what you do after you run this script through your head. Most likely over-eat at some point, am I right?Dieting can also cause overeating during the holidays
because many of us are either on a diet, or planning to start a new diet as soon as the holidays are over. We are either in a – or coming off of a- deprivation cycle (from dieting) or enjoying our last supper before starting a new diet. In all these cases, we tend to eat without staying mindful. This makes it challenging to tune in to our hunger and satiety cues,
and we end up with an extra 5lbs after the holidays.
If you grew up in a house where you were forced to finish your plate, you were being taught to ignore your inner satiety cues. This behavior can lead to a lifetime of overeating. Being encouraged to “finish your plate” no matter how full you are, should be considered cruel and unusual punishment. So why are you still holding on to that belief?
Cut to today, strong support and encouragement from your close family members is paramount when first trying to shift eating styles to Intuitive Eating. If your spouse thinks that it is important for you to “clean your plate” or believes that ignoring your hunger is the best way to drop a few pounds, you will have a much tougher road to travel. Your spouse may trigger that tired belief that your parents enforced when you were a child. Don’t fall for it!Part of becoming an intuitive eater requires the realization that we don’t have to relive history. Just because our parents thought one way about food, does not mean we have to continue those same thoughts. Our parents most likely only had the best of intentions, but that does not mean those intentions still hold true for you today. It’s time to be whoever you want to be with food. THINK FOR YOURSELF!Miriam’s Quick Tips:
- AM I emotionally or biologically hungry? If it’s below the neck it’s real hunger, above the neck it’s emotional
- Dieting, or having a deprivation mind set can ultimately cause you to overeat, the holidays are a time to relax and enjoy all the flavors of the season, don’t worry so much about whether a food is good or bad, keep your mind focused on the flavors, textures and your hunger level instead!
- The more centered you are, the less you will overeat; use SS classes, breathing, stretching, and separating from a situation to self soothe instead of using food
- Make sure you have a protein and complex carbohydrate prior to drinking alcohol. Alcohol lowers your blood sugar so you are more inclined to over-indulge on sweets and fats.
- Don’t “polite eat”. Meaning, don’t eat food just because it’s in front of you and someone you love or trying to impress made it and wants you to eat it. If you don’t want to eat it don’t eat it. Honor your body first. They’ll get over it I promise.
The information contained in this material is for informational and educational purposes only, is meant to complement the advice and guidance of your qualified healthcare provider.
Resources: www.intuitiveeating.org www.amihungry.com www.tcme.org