8 Tips to survive the holidays – Adapt Your Life® Academy



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survive the holidays

8 Tips to survive the holidays

One of the main philosophies that I bring to keto is: keep it simple. If things are complicated, you build this big house of cards that will drop with one little misstep. You want to create a simple strategy for parties, potlucks, restaurant eating, fast food, and holiday dinners. I’ll get into all these, but my main theme is to keep it as simple as you can.

Plan ahead

If you’re a planner, think ahead and plan your meals. It’s very helpful, especially if you have a family. On a day off, prepare meals to get things ready in the refrigerator or freezer. Very helpful when things get busy over the holidays. If you’re not a planner, just stick to the meat and the veggies and no sugar in the drinks. It’s a pretty tried and true method, no matter where you are.

Find keto versions of your favorites

Parties are coming back into vogue now that things are opening up after the pandemic. My preference, of course, if you’re on the strict keto version of a low-carb diet, is to have you stay strictly away from carbohydrates – sugars, and starches – much like total abstinence from alcohol would be. But if you’re in charge of food preparation, and you’re having people come over, find keto versions of these holiday recipes. Internet recipes are all over. You type in “low-carb” or “keto” with the food that you want – stuffing or casserole, for example – and you’ll get lots of versions available for you.

Now, if you’re out and about, you’re not in charge of the food, and you’re going to someone else’s house, you can accept the food and drink, but you don’t have to consume all of it or even much of it. Again, stick to the meat and the veggies. If you do eat some carbs, keep the amount to a minimum. The bottom line is, it has to do with the amount of grams of carbohydrates. It’s not poison to have carbohydrates; you just limit the amount. Remember, a teaspoon of sugar is about five grams of carbohydrates, so if you eat something on a teaspoon, it can’t be more than five grams of carbohydrates because sugar is five grams. So, you want to minimize the amount. Just have a taste is what we say.

Bring along your own food

You may bring your own low-carb food to parties. A time-honored treasure is the deviled eggs. Everyone loves deviled eggs. You’ll be the hit of the party if you bring them. A side dish or dessert, like a low-carb pumpkin cheesecake, is a popular thing. You don’t even have to make a crust with it, so it’s a crustless cheesecake.

Don’t feel the need to explain your choices

You can deflect any social pressure there might be to eat carbs. There are carb pushers out there for various reasons. You don’t have to explain your dietary choices to anyone. If you change the subject enough and people still push the carbs, they’re the ones who kind of feel out of place.

Shift the focus away from food

Treat yourself in other ways over the holidays. Holidays are not just about the food. Focus on loved ones. You might even start other traditions that have nothing to do with food – non-food celebrations like going for a walk, having music, and, of course, there are the presents – taking time to purchase and then give and receive presents. Enjoy that over the holidays.

Let yourself have fast food

If you’re out and about, things are busy, fast food is not forbidden. You might get a burger or a cheeseburger or even a bacon cheeseburger with no bun, no bread, and no fries, of course. You might get grilled chicken or you might get brisket and collards if you find a barbecue place, so there’s a lot of food that you can have if you’re out and about, even drive-through if you don’t have any time and you’re busy doing other things.

Consider your holiday drinks of choice

Alcohol is not forbidden, but it should be limited. Limit alcohol to a drink or two. Stick to keto-friendly drinks as much as possible. Remember, there’s a 5-gram per-drink rule of thumb. That is to say, a glass of wine – a restaurant pour, not a home pour – of wine is about five carbs. Of course, that should be a dry wine, not a fruity wine or dessert wine. A low-carb beer or light beer, 12 ounces, count that as five carbs. And then one or two alcoholic shots are about five carbs – with a sugar-free mixer, of course. I remember during these keto conferences and keto fairs, a very popular drink would be a vodka club soda and a twist of lime. It is possible to drink over the holidays. Be aware that the traditional eggnog is usually full of sugar. If it’s not, if it’s sugar-free, that would be a good choice.

Focus on your progress and persevere

Focus on progress, please, not perfection. Take time to reflect on how far you’ve come. Pretend you’re coming down this mountain and if you’ve stopped or you’re taking a pause, just reflect on how far you’ve come, and then you’ll get up and continue on the rest of your journey after the holidays. If you do have carbs, please, no shame or guilt. It’s just carbohydrates. It’s just a fuel that’s going to stop the fat burning. It’s very hard to burn fat when you’re consuming sugar and starches. You have to burn through all of those carbs before your body is going to give up any fat. Minimize the carbs, have just a taste if you need to, but realize you’ve just stopped the fat-burning, and you’ll get back on track just as soon as you can. Remember that every day is a new day. Don’t let a holiday like Halloween become a holi-month. I’ve seen people who have made great progress through the year, the summer or the fall, and then they get taken off track during the holidays and regain much if not all of their weight by the time the New Year comes around. That’s always sad to see. Much of the time, it’s because there’s a sugar and processed food addiction, and you might not really be in control once you get off track.

If that’s you, if it’s your first or second holiday you’re going through, try to practice total abstinence or just a taste because the carbohydrate will rekindle the flame, as will your desire for the sugar and the starches, if you’re a true sugar and processed food addict. Don’t let the holiday become an all-week affair; you might even give yourself permission to have carbs on the holiday, but then get right back on track the very next day. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season. Happy new year and many great wishes for the next year!

Watch the full video on how to survive the holidays here.

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