Merry Christmas!!

Good evening dear readers, I hope you all had a wonderful day! Whether you spent it with your significant other, family, friends, or curled up in a blanket watching tv alone with a tub of ice cream I hope you were happy and at peace. I suspect, if you are anything like me and millions of other Canadians you probably had a FEW more calories than you normally consume. Don’t worry, I’m not here to make you feel guilty. If you haven’t already done so, slip into a pair of sweat pants, you’ll feel better. 😀 A little indulgence is great–means we’re human. It’s when we start to make it a regular occurrence OR are indulging in the wrong types of things that there is a problem. And that is exactly what i’d like to discuss today.

December 1st sparked a “we should bring chocolates, cookies, cake, caramels” to work every day epidemic. Each morning I was greeted by a smorgasbord of fatty, sugar laden, calorie dense foods. Being a gluten free vegan (and health conscious), I walk by without even glancing at the assorted cakes and cookies but my colleagues are quickly tempted by smells and before you know it, the table has been cleaned. These same colleagues later in the day complain of low energy, bad skin, and of course a scale that is giving them scarier and scarier readings. As I walk to the printer I hear “Whatever, I’ll treat myself over the holidays, then come January 1st, I’m going to diet til I lose the 20 lbs I gained”. If it’s not that, it’s someone pressuring another to eat more “Oh don’t be silly, have 2 or 3, it’s the holidays you’ll have plenty of time to lose the weight in January”.  How about, you only have 1 (if any) and that way you don’t HAVE to lose 20 lbs in January because you don’t gain any weight over the holidays?!

Do I treat myself? I sure do. As a matter of fact…

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This morning I treated myself to some wonderful pancakes with coconut whipped cream and blackberries.

(These pancakes were actually somewhat disappointing. They turned out fluffy, but the ‘mouth feel’ wasn’t amazing. I am struggling to find a good GF/Vegan recipe that doesn’t taste like bean flour or dirt. *HELP!*)

See, when I treat myself, it’s not really a cheat–it’s more of reward. I am not going to pretend to never have slip ups, but the one thing I CAN promise is that I actually think about the food that goes into my body treat or not. If I want a cookie, I don’t just grab the first box I see on the shelf packed with preservatives, and other crap instead, I make my own and know exactly what goes into them. I don’t use holidays, vacation, or ‘cheat days’ etc as an excuse to a)cancel my hard work or b)fill my body with foods I KNOW shouldn’t be eaten.

Okay well…maybe I sometimes do bad things. I typically eat coconut milk ice cream, but a friend recently introduced this to me. This is my Christmas indulgence. It has lots of sugar in it, and isn’t something I encourage you to do very often, but a girl deserves dessert once in a while. Oh, and let’s not forget the difference here is i’m having a special meal 1 or 2 days out of the month, rather than several times per day EVERY day of the month. DSC02215

Another issue, that comes up ESPECIALLY during this time of year is all of the people who try to force feed you garbage offer food to you.  99% of the time it’s neither gluten free or vegan, but somehow that isn’t good enough. I politely decline but somehow offence is taken nonetheless. For some bizarre reason, declining high fructose corn syrup, cheap tasting chocolate, and food that i’m allergic too/don’t eat for ethical reasons gives me an eating disorder or makes me rude. I have had colleagues openly say to me AS THEY ATE A BAG OF CHIPS that being a vegan is so unhealthy and I will probably become very sick because of all the food I don’t eat. The only thing they really know about food is what has been pushed on them through years of marketing -you get calcium from cow’s milk, protein from meat, and if you prefer vegetables you will be an anaemic sickly hippy.

Whoops, I got a teensy bit side tracked, but basically, don’t use “it’s a holiday” as an excuse to binge eat. Treat your body with respect. Have a few things that you really want and walk past the rest. Don’t be afraid of calories, but don’t pretend you won’t feel like crap in a few days once you can no longer button up your pants then do some unhealthy starvation method to try to quickly lose the weight you gained. At the end of the day, you need to decide which you want more that large pizza, with a plate of greasy fries covered in gravy with a side of pie OR to feel light, healthy, and energized something I assure you, you won’t experience from that feast. So, good readers, I am not here to be condescending  or pretend that I am perfect but rather to encourage good decisions where your stomach, healthy, and happiness are concerned.

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