Navigating Meals Around the Holidays

Holidays= tons of food. Why is it like that? Why do holidays center SO MUCH around meals? For a lot of people, eating together is a way of connecting. We sit around the table and talk, tell stories, laugh, just spend quality time together. So what if for you, meals lead to anxiety rather than connection?

  • Go into the meal with a plan. Are you on a dietician recommended meal plan? Talk to your team (therapist/dietician/family) about how to work your meal plan into your plans for the day. (Free tip: the standard “one huge meal at 2 pm” probably isn’t the best plan.)

  • Be vocal about what is and is not helpful. As great as it would be, your friends and family aren’t mind readers. TELL them how to support you- don’t assume that they know, or “should” know.

  • Increase support if needed. This might mean calling that therapist who you used to see, or scheduling a coffee date with a friend.

  • Get back on track. If you have a slip (restrict, binge, purge), you can always do the next right thing, right now! Not tomorrow. Not Monday. Now.

  • Reframe the situation. These are a couple days of the whole year. Eating a piece of pie logically will not make you look 20 lbs heavier tomorrow, and restricting that piece of pie will also not make you look 20 lbs lighter tomorrow. Eat the piece of pie, and enjoy!

Kristen Cairns