How to avoid holiday weight gain? Don't we ever get a break from this discipline, this being good, being healthy, and indulge in some good old fashioned All American over indulgence?
After all it is the holidays, and everyone cooks to satisfy sugar cravings, and for indulgences, right?
I mean, what is "wrong" with using food as a way to alter your feelings?
Quite a bit, it turns out.
How will I ever avoid holiday weight gain, when even my own wife, the Jenny Craig star, bakes her famous slathered in chocolate "holiday logs" which must have 2 or 3 days worth of calories in each log?
From personal experience, I know I can turn some holiday treats into five pounds of new fat very quickly, and then ignore that new weight even though it limits my freedom to move effectively when I play with the kids.
Well it turns out that part of what happens for me at the holidays in terms of the desire to eat, desire being the operative word, is about emotional issues and not nutrition issues.
In other words, I am eating for emotional comfort rather than nutrition.
If funds for Christmas presents are low, there is a certain anxiety that I feel about how my kids will do at Christmas, some of which dates to my own childhood when Christmas was not always a fun time, and survival rather than gift giving and receiving was more of an issue, so I can fill my belly to feel good, rather than for nutrition.
Yes, there is.
When I feel that craving for food, especially soon after I have eaten, I have learned to understand that that experience is an old habit, from a scarcity time in my life, and that I do not need to indulge in eating again now, because food is readily available, and I do not need to fill myself with sugar either.
I can enjoy and savor a sweet treat right before I go exercise, for example. I do not need to eat a plate full of holiday candy just because it is there.
So I am saying to you that holiday weight gain is not a given if I am paying attention to my feelings and my thinking.
(Sort of like brain fitness, right? Nutrition, especially omega 3 fatty acid is a key piece of keeping my brain growing new neurons and forming new connections).
The following information is from the Heartmath folks, and there is a link following for your information. There is video demonstrations and training if you decide to use the Heartmath tools.
* The first step is to identify your stress triggers and stressful emotions that propel stress-related eating and weight gain.
* The second step is to learn two simple HeartMath tools, Notice and Ease and the Power of Neutral to reduce emotional stress and help stop emotional eating.
* The third step is to build internal coherence with the Quick Coherence technique and emWave technology to start changing your emotional diet, help sustain your commitments and make behavior changes you want to make.
* The fourth step is learning the Freeze-Frame and Attitude Breathing techniques to take the drama out of emotional challenges, connect more deeply with your heart’s power and intelligence, make attitude shifts and to find new perspectives.
* The fifth step is learning to make the exciting change from emotional eating to intuitive eating, using the Freeze-Frame technique with the emWave to listen to your heart’s intuitive discernment on what, when and how much to eat.
Now if you take those Heartmath rules and combine them with Dr. Judith Beck's Think Yourself Thin Program, you will have the cognitive and physiological tools to make it through this holiday and any holiday without holiday weight gain, and even be able to enjoy the healthy, nutritious meals you prepare for yourself, while you feel great.
What a delight it is to feel good, while concentrating on the purpose of the holiday and the relationships involved, rather than being driven by old emotional patterns from your childhood.
Very early in my personal growth experience, a wise person taught me to use the phrase "gratitude is the attitude" when I was resentful or afraid and that phrase has helped me feel better tens of thousands of times.
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