The two things we usually regret the most after Christmas is eating too much and dealing with family. This Christmas, you have a chance to do things differently and enjoy both the food and the company without any regrets afterwards. Keep reading to find out how.
Enjoying both the food and the company over Christmas
Christmas usually entails a lot of eating, mostly at family gatherings. So, if you don’t want to blow up over Christmas (literally and metaphorically), here are some simple rules which will allow you to enjoy both the Christmas food and the company without getting fat or triggered:
Firstly – if you have a Christmas party to go to, try not to eat anything beforehand. Ideally, fast on water for 16 hours before your party. If you can’t fast for that long, then eat only fat and protein (no carbs!). This way, you will regulate both your appetite and your blood sugar and insulin levels which means you are not going to eat as much and you will burn through the party calories much more efficiently instead of storing them as fat.
Secondly – once at the party, try not to snack too much while you mingle with people before sitting down at the table. Ideally, eat only at the table allowing yourself a window of 60min (or as close to that as possible) during which you will eat and drink whatever you want. Experiments have shown that even when we binge, if we limit the time to 60min, our body will be able to deal with the binge as if nothing happened. Once that time is over, stop eating and drinking and return to another 16 hours of fasting (again, if fasting for 16 hours is too hard, then eat some fat and protein but lay off the carbs for that period).
Thirdly – use the fasting time to reflect on possible challenges with family members during the Christmas celebrations. Family reunions can be a big trigger and very stressful, so it pays to be prepared in order to avoid any conflict. Identify at least one area where you clash with a family member and resolve to make a compromise, to give up something you are strongly attached to in the name of unity, reconciliation and your own personal happiness. Once at the party, put on a smile and keep your spine straight (this helps override emotional reactivity), and keep reminding yourself of the compromise you already made a commitment to yourself to make. Fasting will have dissolved a lot of the charge and the unhealthy emotions already, so it shouldn’t be that hard now to have a great time and extend good will to others.