Wednesday, April 4, 2012

The Woes of Holiday Eating

Holidays are a contentious time for me.

Now that I have adopted a whole foods, plant-based, oil-free diet for health reasons, I have to be very diligent about where I eat (some might call me difficult, that's just too bad.)

Going Out To Eat

Most restaurants feature buffets for the holidays.  While I am disciplined to avoid the obvious (ham, eggs, cookies, etc.), it's the hidden ingredients that are difficult to avoid.  Where is the milk/butter hiding: gravy, mashed potatoes, pudding?  Veggies are probably sitting in butter.  As for the oil, it's almost guaranteed to be in everything.  If I could take the Chef by the hand and say walk me through this buffet and tell me what I can eat, the offering would be so restricted that it's not even worth the admission price.  That and I don't want to be stressed/"difficult" on a holiday - I am after all supposed to be enjoying myself.  So restaurants, just aren't worth the hassle for me.

The Family Dinner

Then there's the family dinner.  Families mean well, but if they aren't following your diet it's very difficult for them to accommodate your needs.  And should they?  Most families have long standing family recipes that make a special appearance during the holidays.  Who am I to say don't put butter in Grandma Bea's Best Ever Stuffing, you won't miss it!  So for me this is a another stress area, I don't do well when hungry, but I'm not willing to break from what I think is best for me to appease someone else. Yes, I could bring my own food (awkward/rude), but again where's my holiday (now I have to pack a lunch)?!?!


I never met a chocolate chip cookie I didn't like.  Those little babies are my potential downfall at any given moment.  You have no idea the great lengths I go to procure a vegan chocolate chip cookie!  Yeah, I'll admit it, I'm a chocolate chip cookie addict!  So, is it fair to surround myself by temptation for an entire day?  I'm no saint people, I didn't give up my favorite foods without a struggle.

Some would tell me it's just a day, enjoy yourself!  Well there are about 5-7 of these "days" within the year.  And frankly, my health is worth more to me than a fleeting moment of "enjoying myself." Because that day will come and go, but the aftermath on my health will last a lifetime.  And don't tell me a little won't hurt, people just say that to justify their bad eating habits and I know better.

So to all of you out there struggling these holidays, I'm with you & stay strong.  You know what's best & block out all the rest.

Keep It Healthy!
The Hoff

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