Nutrition, Psychology

The number one thing to remember when eating and drinking this Christmas.

“Don’t feel guilty and don’t punish yourself”.  It’s obviously easier said than done but it’s the most important piece of advice going into the silly season.  Sure, you’ll want to keep some sort of balance and won’t want your “diet” blowing out, but so what if it does?

Guilt and self-loathing around food consumption is perhaps just as big a problem today as the over-consumption of “bad” food.  In fact, they aren’t entirely separate entities as the former can often result in the latter; it becomes a horrible part of the “restrict, binge, guilt, repeat” cycle.  Some people struggle with it more than others, but the majority of you would have dealt with it in some capacity at least once in your life.

How do you address it?  Firstly I would recommend removing any “inspirational” fitness influencers that aren’t well balanced in their approach to diet and lifestyle until you’re strong enough in yourself to realise their opinions are polar.  Secondly, find people who are well balanced and follow their guidance.  Thirdly, remember everything is temporary.

I do not recommend consuming low-nutrient dense foods along with alcoholic beverages every day of the year; however I would recommend experiencing them in a moderate sense, especially when important social events facilitate it.  The festive season is one of those times.  Continue your usually well balanced diet throughout, however if you’re at events and feel like a bit of cake or a generous serving of potato bake then go hell for leather and don’t let yourself feel guilty for doing it.  In fact, consuming such foods you love (whatever they may be), should be an integral part of your well-balanced diet.

If that isn’t enough remember that having a bad relationship with food is counter-productive to your health both physically and mentally.  In fact, simply stressing over what you’ve eaten can alter the way your body metabolises that food as well as how it functions overall.  What am I saying?  Stressing over not eating cake or feeling guilty every time you’ve eaten cake is more unhealthy than having cake every now and then and being happy for doing so.

Hard-core clean eaters please direct any hate mail to youre@doingitwrong.com

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