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The Holiday Season...


I always tell clients that there are two days of the year when all bets are off and you can eat whatever your heart desires. One is your birthday and the other is Christmas. But Christmas is a day, not a month-long "season". Unfortunately, in Canadian tradition, Christmas seasonal "events" start sometime in mid to late November and run right up until New Years Eve. Some of these events include:

Employer-sponsored Christmas parties

Workplace potluck meals

Treats brought into the workplace for the "season". (Try working in healthcare - it's an endless parade of treats!)

Church meals

Cookie exchanges

Bazaars and bake sales

Christmas concerts and entertainment events, possibly with a bar available or an "afterglow" snacks and visiting time.

Parties with family and/or friends

The traditional Christmas family feast, possible several times over with different branches of the family tree.

Food gifts exchanged with friends.

So many eating opportunities! So much food that you wouldn't normally be exposed to! What's an aspiring low carb eater to do???

First of all, take a few deep breaths and don't get anxious. There are many food-related traditions that surround the Christmas season, and you can be selective about which ones you want to partake of and which you can decline. I describe it like this...

"If an opportunity arises for you to share in a particular food that absolutely makes your heart sing, then have it - in moderate quantity and savouring every morsel of taste, texture, mouth-feel - really be present in the experience of eating that food in that moment. Make it a truly decadent experience - experience whatever emotions might go along with that food - joy, contentment, family love, memories. Don`t feel guilt - enjoy the moment and then move on."

But if a food opportunity is just a "Meh...nothing special" sort of reaction, then give it a pass. Don't fall prey to the "Oh well..." mindless face stuffing that is all too prevalent this time of year.

For me, it's shortbread cookies. Homemade with real butter. They make my heart sing. As do gingerbread cookies. Again, homemade with real ingredients. Storebought versions of either are generally a "Meh..." sort of experience, so I have learned to give them a pass. The taste will never live up to my expectations.

And I have found that I can get the shortbread experience from fat bombs. And because gingerbread cookies are all about the spices - ginger, cloves and cinnamon - I have made gingerbread fat bombs that give me almost the same joy as the cookies.

So think about what makes your heart sing. And what exactly about that experience makes it so special - taste, texture, smell? Life is too short to not enjoy the true pleasures. Just keep your brain engaged in decision making and then be present in the moment to savour and relish each experience.

Have a blessed Christmas!

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