Compliments to Your
The Season of Goodies
by Joann Flora,
Acupressure, Nutrition Counseling, Qigong
November 21, 2002
Thursday - 11:00 pm
"Fire In The
The most complicated eating
season of the year is upon us: THE HOLIDAYS! For
some of us, this is the season of goodies, delectable treats,
special ethnic meals, and indulgences of every gastronomic proportion
and description. For others, it is a time of poisonous toxins,
deadly carbohydrates, artery clogging fats, and enough calories
to last a lifetime. And that's before one considers the parties!
For many people with health considerations affected by dietary
habits, this can be a very high stress time of year.
by Lance Mertz
Some of the conditions most
affected by food include (hyperglycemia)diabetes, coronary artery
disease, arthritis, gout, obesity, high cholesterol, hypertension
(high blood pressure), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), kidney
disease, liver disease, eating disorders such as bulimia (bingeing/purging),
and on the list goes. The truth is, that most disease processes
are in fact affected by what and how we eat. Some health conditions
result from nutritional deficiencies (EX: pellagra - a niacin
deficiency). Or, they may be worsened through specific food intake
(EX: diabetes - highly impacted by consumption of simple carbohydrates).
Some foods and common herbs impact how our bodies respond to
the medications we take (EX: people using steroids, which cause
sodium retention, should be cautious in their use of table salt
and prepared foods high in sodium). But this doesn't mean we
can't enjoy the holiday season; it means we must be conscientious
in how we choose to enjoy it.
If you are concerned about the culinary offerings you will face
outside your home, these suggestions can help you enjoy yourself
while you minimize your risk:
1) Eat something before you
attend dinners or parties. You won't be hungry when you arrive
and may make better choices.
2) When you get to your scheduled
event, take a small plate of food you tolerate well and carry
it around. Don't put it down or finish it. This keeps people
from forcing more food your way.
3) Use a salad or dessert plate
instead of a dinner plate. Eat it slowly.
4) If you don't believe you
have the strength to do what's best for you, ask a companion
to support your efforts.
5) Call the restaurant or host
ahead of time and request a special, safe dish. Sometimes, this
can be as simple as having a sauce omitted from your portion,
having the fat removed, or having a half portion plated for you.
It does not need to be an imposition or complication.
6) Bring your own food. You
can do this very tactfully and not hurt anyone's feelings.
7) If alcohol is your concern,
upon arrival at your event, get a tall glass of grapefruit and
soda, or soda with a splash or cranberry. Put a lemon or lime
on the edge of the glass. Put a paper umbrella or other bar toy
in it if they are available. Keep it full. You won't even be
asked if you need another 'drink'.
8) When all else fails, don't
go. Never jeopardize your health for the sake of being social.
9) Be the host of the party!
Prepare healthy dishes you can enjoy and have a nice evening.
Sadly, "holiday cooking"
and "healthy food" are not synonymous. Many traditional
recipes are loaded with dairy, fat, refined wheat flour, sodium,
sugar, simple carbohydrates, and are prepared by frying. But
don't despair! Book stores and websights now offer cook books
and recipe planning information to support major health concerns.
Just today, I took a recipe for Creamy Pumpkin Mousse off the
American Diabetes Association websight. Their Book
News section features Every Day's A Holiday Diabetic
Cookbook. The American Heart Association offers a variety cookbooks
including the Around the World Cookbook: Recipes With
International Flavor, and Low Fat & Luscious
Desserts . The resources are out there, if you choose
to use them. In addition to bookstores and the web sights pertinent
to your health concerns, talk to a professional about how to
get through the holidays. A nutrition counselor or dietician
can help you with moral support, meal planning, and party strategies.
They are a terrific investment in helping you have enjoyable
and beneficial holidays.
Remember, the people who are the most successful in managing
their disease, rather than having their disease manage them,
are those who are motivated to be proactive in their own health
care. We'll talk further about mustering this motivation (for
the holidays and beyond) in the next edition.
E-mail Joann Flora
To Your Health
Joann Flora 2002
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