Our Top 5 Strategies for Dealing with Holiday Meals that Go Sideways

First, there is no wagon.  There is no such thing as getting off track.  You are human.  Food is in an abundance right under your nose and it’s your human nature to want to devour it all.  It’s not that you lack willpower and are weak.  You can’t fight centuries of human nature.

So, what happens if you end up “caving” and eating that gingerbread or go overboard on the potatoes this holiday season?  Nothing terrible.  You’re not a bad, weak or terrible person.  You’re not a failure.  You didn’t fall off the preverbal wagon.  You. Are. Human.

This is the biggest issue I see people struggle with during the holidays.  It’s so problematic that it sometimes destroys the meaning of the season.  Fighting evolution is crazy.  You need to stop.  You’re not a failure.  It’s not your destiny to be sick and overweight.  There’s no need to beat yourself up.

Cake may be eaten.  Gingerbread may be eaten.  Ice cream may be eaten.  It’s life.

Well, what do you do if these things do happen during the holidays?  Try these 5 stratgies to get you back to feeling good and in control in no time.

 

 

  1. Don’t let it drag on after that indulgence

There are two main problems we see after someone promises themselves, they’re going to eat “perfectly” at a holiday party and end up having something they’re trying to avoid.  For some people this affects them on a deep emotional level.  They feel pathetic and worthless.  They have the mentality that if they can’t get through one party resisting a cookie, then they might as well throw in the towel and eat everything they want since they’re never going to succeed.

You are not a failure.  You are human.

Other people are quick to forgive themselves but say “if I had a cookie, then I might as well have the potatoes, bread, pasta, pie, cake and pizza.  This will be my last time ever eating this junk food, and from now on I’ll eat perfectly!” 

“One Last Syndrome” is very real.  Don’t fool yourself.  You’re human.  Pizza is going to happen.  Cake is going to happen.

The best piece of advice I was ever given was that it doesn’t matter what you did that knocked you down.  That didn’t define your character.  What determined the type of person you are is how you pick yourself back up.  What will define your success is what you do after you eat that cookie.

Remember, it’s progress, not perfection.

 

  1. Drink water

Quench your thirst with a cup of water.  Many people are often quite thirsty after consuming sugar and starch.  We often mistake thirst for hunger.  You can drink flat or carbonated water.  It can be hot, warm, room temperature or cold.  Just make sure you hydrate.

 

  1. Eat some fiber

You want to be careful consuming sugar with dietary fat.  Instead, go for some leafy greens and non-starchy vegetables, such as brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus or bell peppers to help you feel satiated.  If you can, try adding some vinegar, such as raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar, to the vegetables.  This will help reduce your appetite and help stabilize your blood sugar levels.

 

  1. Move

Later that day or the next day get moving.  Go for a walk.  Hit the gym.  Do active chores at home.  Get moving to help force your muscles to use up some of that sugar.  Moving is critical to get the body quickly back into a state of fat burning, also called ketosis.

 

  1. Fat fast

Fat fasting is a great tool to use if you’re feeling hungry and have strong cravings for sugar the day after an indulgence.  Click here to follow our guide to fat fasting.  The rules are straight-forward:

  • Eat when you’re hungry or craving
  • Limit your food variety down to very few food types for a monotonous diet, which will be reduce hunger
  • We recommend eating meals constructed of bacon (can substitute with sardines, salmon or another fatty protein), eggs and olives
  • Avoid nuts and nut butters (unless you’re a vegetarian), dairy and natural sweeteners of any kind
  • Use healthy fats, such as coconut oil, olive oil and grass-fed butter for cooking
  • You can include leafy greens and non-starchy vegetables
  • Bone broth, tea and coffee are permitted

You might find that you’re eating quite a lot for a day or two, but most people find that by the end of the week they’re back in control of their cravings and find fasting and eating well to be effortless again.

 

No holiday season indulgence means you’re going to fail to achieve your health goals.

  • Megan Ramos, The Fasting Method Co-Founder

 

2019-12-11T21:29:36-05:0012 Comments

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Tom M
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Tom M

The main reason I do not go overboard during the holidays is that those added pounds are so difficult to get rid of a second time. I can remember stuffing myself so full and just eating all day long. Not anymore. Great ideas to help along the way…not just during the holidays. Thanks.

BernardP
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BernardP

There is an old maxim regarding weight gain over time : “You gain one pound each year during the Holidays and never lose it.”

Do the math and see how surprisingly close it comes to reality.

Chicken Little
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Chicken Little

@BernardP: I never heard that maxim, but I would guess many people would be thrilled to gain only a single pound over the holidays, not to mention be only 50 lbs overweight by age 60! I’m 70 and weigh the same as when I was 30. But I am lucky and also work at it. I generally slim down a bit before the holidays, and then resolve to enjoy and savour the season, knowing I will gain some weight that I will have to lose. I gained 5 lbs over the holidays last year, but it was all gone by… Read more »

Kate Daneluk
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Kate Daneluk

Not anymore. I have the key to losing what I gained at the holidays and more. Thanks to TFM.

Anne Scott
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Anne Scott

Typo — “preverbal” should be “proverbial” 🙂

yohannes
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yohannes

I am 67 and I used to take metformin 500mg in the morning and evening. But after fasting for about 3 weeks along with exercise, my FBS went down to 108 from 131 and I quitted the evening medication. Now, I am doing well with intermittent fasting for the last 1 & 1/2 months altogether. With this programme I am able to control my type 2 diabetes and shed about 2 kgs of my weight. I am very much grateful to the programme developers. Now my concern is 1. my AB1c increased from 6.5 to 7.0 in the last 3… Read more »

Dorota
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Dorota

After reading Dr. Fung and Moore’s book I was succesful with a 5 day fast. I was well prepared and found it very easy to do! I had to stop due to extremely low blood pressure and weakness with onset of a flu I had contracted on a cruiseship. Then Christmas came full of indulgence. I was not too bad. I fasted till noon and ate generally healthy with small cake and cookies here an there only. Being ill I did not exercise since the fast as my lungs are congested….I am up 6 lbs in one week! I am… Read more »

Mimi Keeler
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Mimi Keeler

I am a vegetarian wanting to fat fast after holiday feasting. Can you please expand on which nuts, nut butters and non-starchy vegetables are allowed? Thank you. MK

Clare
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Clare

What is the reason behind avoiding nuts while fat fasting?

Barb
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Barb

I just recently read The diabetic Code. And realize I’ve ben doing it wrong for a long time. I have Type 1 Diabetes. And And insulin resistance. But not much information on whether I can fast on type 1. Ive asked my Endocrinologist. But didn’t get much information.

rachel
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I would suggest booking a free consult to speak with one of our coaches to see if you are a good candidate for the program https://thefastingmethod.com/join/

Johannes Herbst
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Johannes Herbst

Before any feast or holidays, take your weight on a scale in the morning. After having eaten all that stuff, you fast. Eat nothing until you have reached your starting weigth. You will lose the weight quickly, even some pounds a day, because you will have stored some water. You must be fat adapted and use electrolyte drink.

That is what I do. Normally I eat meat and some greens OMAD. But when there is a fest or party or something with lots of eating, I just go there and enjoy.