Screw the Diet and Have a Merry Christmas!

One of the most obnoxious things about working in the health industry has to be how people feel the need to justify what they’re eating to me. Like I’m some kind of Food Messiah who they need to repent their sins to.

I haven’t been able to attend a Christmas gathering yet this year without someone sheepishly explaining to me what’s on their plate.

Here’s the thing, I am not the food police and I won’t be adding you to the naughty list.

Unless you’re paying me to care about what you eat – I genuinely don’t care if you want some cheesecake to go with that glass of wine. No judgment here. In fact, I’ll probably join you. 

Hell, I had a couple mini Twix bars with a veggie omelette this morning.

The holidays are meant to be celebrated and that generally involves enjoying foods that you typically don’t have access to year-round.

Photography by Ryan McGuire
Photography by Ryan McGuire

There will be days when you overeat and days when you undercut. And that’s perfectly okay.

There will also be mornings when you have Twix bars for breakfast and days when you have fruit. And that’s cool, too.

When we embrace eating moderately 365 days a year, we don’t feel the need to overdo it on the weekends or the holidays, because we’re already eating exactly what we want when we want it. Buzz words like “treats,” “cheats,” and “rewards” are used by people who feel deprived.

An extreme all-or-nothing approach to fat loss isn’t going to be sustainable for the long-term. If you can’t see yourself eating the exact same way six months from now as you are on your current diet, then get ready for a nasty rebound. You’ll only be able to white-knuckle it for so long before shit hits the fan and you wake up from a self-induced food coma surrounded by Little Debbie wrappers in a cloud of Cheetos dust.

Wouldn’t it have just been easier to have had the two cookies earlier instead of having to deal with the feelings of failure and self-loathing from eating the entire bag?

What we eat today directly impacts what we eat tomorrow.

Having a healthy relationship with food means being able to eat ALL the foods ALL the time. When we remove the moral judgment and labels like “good” or “bad,” they lose their power over us. Food no longer fills us with guilt, shame, and fear.

Don’t let anxiety get in the way of partaking in all of the homemade goodies this holiday season. Guilt is such a useless emotion when applied in this way.

Instead of focusing on dieting, strict food rules, and exercise programs to lose weight and obtain the perfect body, let’s try to shift our focus to these four things:

1. Focus on the why
2. Observe your food triggers and rituals
3. Eat to satisfy
4. Trust your body’s cues

As we shift away from the calculated, strict regime of dieting and into a kinder, calmer way of eating, our whole world changes. And that peace and contentment around food is what we are really looking for as we resolve to diet those pounds away.

If you need help figuring out your “why” and where you may be going wrong, let’s have a chat and discuss a plan to help you end the cycle of self-sabotage and finally get into the body of your dreams. But this time, with a smart, balanced approach that includes all of your favorite foods.

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