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How did you stay primal during the holidays?

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  • How did you stay primal during the holidays?

    I have a horrible time controlling myself during the holidays, last year I gained 10 pounds by binging on baklava, burgers, pot roast and other high carb, high fat, high sugar foods. How do I turn down my parents cooking. I want to allow myself thanksgiving dinner and christmas dinner, but my family puts a huge emphasis on food during this time of year, lots of high sugar, high fat, high carb stuff that will cause weight gain. I want to be able to fit into my jeans come new years day. My birthday(a few weeks after Christmas) present this past year were jeans that were two sizes larger. Do you have any substitutes or suggestions? I was thinking I would be eating tons of low carb soups(loaded with greens) and roasted pumpkins/squashes this year.

  • #2
    i do this by eating primal around the holidays. i let myself go on thanksgiving, one christmas dinner, and maybe a new years party...the rest of the time i am as strict as i can be. i think it's more important to be a part of the celebration than it is to worry about the crust on the pumpkin pie.
    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread60178.html

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    • #3
      I just eat myself really full on turkey and salad. So full that I don't have room for the bad stuff.

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      • #4
        Make a big bowl of the inside of twice baked potatos out of whipped cauliflower and keep your mouth shut and watch everyone enjoy. You can have at the bird and your dish and veggies.

        Twice Baked Potatoes Recipe | Simply Recipes

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        • #5
          Originally posted by RachelW View Post
          I have a horrible time controlling myself during the holidays, last year I gained 10 pounds by binging on baklava, burgers, pot roast and other high carb, high fat, high sugar foods. How do I turn down my parents cooking. I want to allow myself thanksgiving dinner and christmas dinner, but my family puts a huge emphasis on food during this time of year, lots of high sugar, high fat, high carb stuff that will cause weight gain. I want to be able to fit into my jeans come new years day. My birthday(a few weeks after Christmas) present this past year were jeans that were two sizes larger. Do you have any substitutes or suggestions? I was thinking I would be eating tons of low carb soups(loaded with greens) and roasted pumpkins/squashes this year.
          There's nothing wrong with burgers (sans bun) and pot roast. This will be my first time of being primal during the holidays. I didn't go primal until the beginning of this year. However, I kind fell off the wagon during summer vacation and have been struggling to get back on and remain there ever since. At least I didn't gain lots of weight back. I'm going to try to remain as primal as possible, but I'll probably eat some of my Dad's Christmas cookies.

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          • #6
            This is going to be my first primal Thanksgiving and Christmas. My girlfriend and I have two Thanksgiving dinners and at least two Christmas dinners, possibly three. I'm going to allow myself a couple cheats but I'm going to try to focus on the meats and vegies. I'm going to allow myself some of my grandmother's oyster dressing. It's my favorite and I really don't want to miss it. I'm also going to allow myself one dessert each holiday. So one for Thanksgiving, one for Christmas, not one for each meal, which is what I normally would have done. Also, it'll help if I stick to water to drink instead of sodas and really sweet things like I might have done originally.

            If there's something you really like, don't torture yourself. If cheating a little won't make you feel like crap and will make your holidays less stressful, then do it.
            "Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself of much life. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something." ~ H.D. Thoreau

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            • #7
              Take the buns off your burgers.

              Don't eat dessert, or just have a very small serving to make your family happy.

              Eat a ton of the good stuff (the meat and salad), and protest that you were much too full from your mother's excellent cooking to have even one bite of whatever it is you don't want to eat.

              Make your family feel good by eating with gusto and complimenting the cook on whatever it is, and ignore the bad stuff. Not that hard.
              Today I will: Eat food, not poison. Plan for success, not settle for failure. Live my real life, not a virtual one. Move and grow, not sit and die.

              My Primal Journal

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              • #8
                You're talking about two meals out of the next 40 some days. Relax and let loose some if you know you're one that can jump right back on the wagon.

                Bring an appetizer that is primal or a main meal dish or even a dessert that fits more closely to primal. This really helps keep me in the festive mood....oh and the wine, too!

                Eat the best that you can that is primal, then a spoonful of the dishes you do not want to skip. Desserts-I'm sure there will be others who will want to taste a bit of each dessert. Find a few who are willing to split it 3 ways or more. By dessert time, I'm way to full to eat much than a few bites.

                I relax as long as I know I don't continue the celebrating over next few days.

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                • #9
                  I am lucky because I am still enjoying the positive changes in my health more than I miss the old indulgences. But, I still compromise a bit this time of year. What I have done is to figure out what indulgences are really worth it to me, and what is not. And what I have found is that there isn’t much.

                  For example…my birthday comes during the Holidays and since I was born, it has been a tradition for me to have this fantastic family recipe chocolate cake. Two years ago, I discovered it really didn’t taste as good to me any more…too sweet, and not worth it. So last year, I asked for a birthday steak. Which is special for me because it means a cost is no object dry aged strip steak from my butcher. I am planning on a repeat this year and I really will enjoy that much more than I ever would the cake.

                  At Thanksgiving, I will have some of my wife’s phenomenal corn stuffing. Probably a good helping for the Thanksgiving meal, and a little bit once for leftovers. And I will definitely have one piece of homemade pecan pie, but it will be small compared to previous years because I just can’t eat as much sweet stuff. Pretty much the same picture for Christmas with some slightly different specific foods.

                  I guess the principal is that I am very, very good all year and I’m not going to hesitate over what I really want on two or three days out of the year. But as each year goes by, what I really want is changing. If you still have sugar cravings, you might just want to plan it out. Find a few things you truly love (like my steak) that fit your new life choices in a relatively better, and go all out for some of those.

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                  • #10
                    I get the high carb (which would include high sugar) but why are you thinking high fat is bad? CW maybe? If you eat low carb and low fat, you are left with high protein, which is not good palate wise or health wise. Think good protein and good fats. Don't be afraid of the good fats, including animal fats. Taste good, good for you, filling, and keep you full. If you are new to controlling your carbs it will be a struggle but it gets easier with time. Just be patient with yourself. Think long term goals (rest of your life) rather than short term goals (jeans by Jan 1).
                    Grass Fed Beef Restaurants

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Tneah View Post
                      You're talking about two meals out of the next 40 some days. Relax and let loose some if you know you're one that can jump right back on the wagon.
                      Yep. It's the day-to-day temptations that make people gain during the holidays. People bring candy and cookies in to work. There are more parties with more drinking and snacking going on. I think it's important to go into the season with the mindset that Thanksgiving and Christmas are special and the rest of the days are just regular days where regular rules apply. Most people will not be offended if you don't eat the cookies they left in the break room or if you don't drink, or don't drink much, at their parties. They usually won't even notice.

                      Snacks, sweets, and other junk are around us all the time and we say no. There's no reason these couple of months have to be any different. It's just the festival atmosphere that allows us to convince ourselves they are.

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                      • #12
                        This is my third go-round of the holidays while being primal. Three years ago at this time of year, I was just starting out with my first baby-step of having eggs instead of cereal for breakfast. I'm Jewish so we have extra holidays; when I say third go-round, I mean third time around of a full calendar year of feasts.

                        Coming from that point of view: I've had "good" holidays, and I've had "crash and burn" holidays too. So I can't say that any one definitive plan works for me. What worked one year didn't work the next because I got tired of all the attention that people were giving me about what I eat and don't eat, and I didn't enjoy the celebration as much. The only thing that never fails to work is to eat as much protein as I can at the meal. But sometimes over the holidays, normal routines are broken, so I don't get the opportunity to really fill up on the good stuff before I'm thrown into a social situation with lots of junk.

                        All I can tell you is make the commitment to yourself that you will not give up and say "this is too hard." However the holidays go, this is a commitment for life, and a few days out of the year will not make or break you if you keep your commitment to forward momentum.

                        I'm not saying you're going to fail and gain ten pounds again this year. I'm just saying that over the course of your life, through trial and error, you'll learn what works for you for the long haul, and what just isn't sustainable.

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                        • #13
                          I allow myself to indulge on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. The rest of the season I try to be as close to 100% as possible. If there are parties and gatherings that we attend that are outside of the 3 days above, I really try to stay on the wagon and allow myself those 3 days as my indulgences. Also, on my 3 days of indulgence, I save myself for things that are really worth it. For instance, my MIL makes this one kind of Christmas cookie that DH adores, and I think they're just "meh" so I don't eat them. I save myself for a piece or two of kick-butt, dark chocolate fudge. Also, even though there are dinner rolls on the table at Thanksgiving, I don't eat any. They're just not worth it to me, but a slice of homemade pumpkin pie with whip cream is definitely worth it!

                          Also, we host Christmas Dinner at our house every year. Last year, the menu I selected was mostly primal with a few things thrown in for the SAD people (which I avoided), but I did allow myself a lovely slice of my SIL homemade to-die-for cheesecake.

                          For me, it's all about allowing a few selective and totally worth it indulgences and the rest of the time, I keep it clean.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by duckmama View Post
                            I allow myself to indulge on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. The rest of the season I try to be as close to 100% as possible. If there are parties and gatherings that we attend that are outside of the 3 days above, I really try to stay on the wagon and allow myself those 3 days as my indulgences. Also, on my 3 days of indulgence, I save myself for things that are really worth it. For instance, my MIL makes this one kind of Christmas cookie that DH adores, and I think they're just "meh" so I don't eat them. I save myself for a piece or two of kick-butt, dark chocolate fudge. Also, even though there are dinner rolls on the table at Thanksgiving, I don't eat any. They're just not worth it to me, but a slice of homemade pumpkin pie with whip cream is definitely worth it!

                            Also, we host Christmas Dinner at our house every year. Last year, the menu I selected was mostly primal with a few things thrown in for the SAD people (which I avoided), but I did allow myself a lovely slice of my SIL homemade to-die-for cheesecake.

                            For me, it's all about allowing a few selective and totally worth it indulgences and the rest of the time, I keep it clean.
                            Even before PB, I never ate the rolls. Bread would just fill me up too much and I would rather have room for the real food. One of the few times I indulge in bread, is I allow myself one skinny slice of tomato pie at the Italian restaurant that we eat at occasionally. That bread with the kick-ass garlicy, tomatoey, spicey topping is so good.

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                            • #15
                              I have not been primal for a holiday yet, but I was vegetarian for 7 years, and I can tell you I will essentially use the same approach. I will eat what I think fits into my plan. For me as far as desserts, etc. go, if I don't start then I don't miss them, if I have one, it will set me off on a bender. Luckily Thanksgiving this year is at my house, with just the kids, hubby and I, so no issues. Christmas day we will be driving to the beach, again no issues there. Once at the beach we do all fresh and local, so the only thing that will be an issue is the alcohol. But as has been said it is just a few days. and when I decide to indulge, I make sure to savor every single morsel.
                              Chris
                              "Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass. It is about learning to dance in the rain."
                              Unknown

                              My journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread36279.html

                              My "Program": doing my version of a 4:3 - 3 day fast diet with real food every day, with a little twist of anti-inflammatory mixed in.

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