Friday, November 16, 2012

The Voice of My Bulls*hit Meter

 It is time to go over the river and through the woods to other people's houses and food stuffs and preparations and eating patterns. Whether I am traveling into a happy gathering or an emotional minefield I have to know thyself and pack my own Bullsh*t Meter. If I am faced with an array of choices from many other kitchens I guarantee you I am going to find at least one to eat 'as a treat' and conveniently 'forget' that it could be a trigger. I have to watch that I do not show up at the party in HALT mode: TOO Hungry or Angry or Lonely or Tired. Any one of these can nudge me over into food amnesia. I need to confer with my personal BullSh*t Meter. 

Here is an example of a conversation  at many holiday meals at the homes of others:
Didn't you consider that the cranberry jelly was sweetened with sugar - the way it has been made for the past 50 years? I make it without sugar at home so I just thought.. . . .  Just thought what? Did you ask? You know very well you did not. Do not take that unless you can be satisfied with a spoonful instead of the portion you are eyeing right now. 

What did you think was that white sticky stuff on top of the sweet potatoes you dolloped on to your plate? I thought I could brush the white stuff off. Oh come on, stop calling it white stuff. You know damn well it's marshmallow. Oh, and by the way, marshmallows still contain sugar - nothing new there. I know you brought your own plain baked sweet potatoes. Why don't you go and have one of those. 

Did you consider there was butter in the mashed potatoes when you saw it melting all over the top of the pile? Did you take that butter into account when you took your scoop? I don't think I got that much butter. . . Then why did you lick the residue on your hand like a crazy woman. Account for the butter and skip that extra gravy. 

The dessert table is over there. . . are you really going to look over there? Well, there might be something I can have. Go eat a fruit off the centerpiece and stay away from the dessert table. There are desserts I can eat just one of. Did you bring any of those here today? No. Is anyone else here on your food plan? No but there are people on diets. Does that mean you can eat whatever they can eat? No. Then your magical mind is just trying to cause trouble. Get away from the dessert table. Put this piece of spearmint gum in your mouth. Wash some dishes or walk their dog. Be useful. You will feel good about you and about today's food when you stop pondering the 'what ifs.'

People are going to say I am being too restrictive and that it is unhealthy to deprive myself at the holidays. Are you eating a full meal with protein, lots of vegetables and some complex carbs in the form of whole grains? Is there fat in the turkey and the oil on the roasted squash?  Yes. Is it a healthy and satisfying meal when there is no holiday attached to it. Yes.  Are any of those people keeping the pounds off your body? Are any of them willing to gain weight for you? If they are, let them eat the stuff they want you to have. You do not need it. Are you willing to gain weight to make other people happy? Why would that make them happy? That is for another post. . . . 

Are you going to go to every party with me this season?  You bet your keeping the pounds off ass I am! 



Princess Dieter aka Mir said...

I'm a big believer in changing traditions for health. If there was only one "treat bomb" at holidays, I'd say, enjoy a bit of ONE thing that's iffy and move along.

But we have this habit of piling temptation up on temptation, not one dessert, but 3 or 5.

Over the years, as we've grown older, with the weight and cholesterol and sugar issues that can come as the fifties, sixties, and seventies become reality, we've changed how we do Thanksgiving. Except for desserts last year, it was pretty wholesome and lower cal.

My sister evolved her sweet potato side dish from one with sugar and marshmallows to one with almond extract and a bit of honey or Splenda. We use lower fat options for casseroles like green bean (and fresh green beans). I make organic cranberry sauce with Truvia, and I like it better than the canned jelly stuff I used to adore. We have lower cal, no sugar dessert options these days, along with the calorie bombs. Having options is nice.

Changes are possible. A family just has to come to grips with the fact that saying Thanks to God for His blessings or the birth of His Son doesn't require a descent into self-destructive glutony. :)


bbubblyb said...

Great post Jane and so very true. I will be in the mine field called my mother-in-laws house as I always am at Thanksgiving and it will be tough. I will try to keep my inner voice (the one that talks sense) talking to me and helping me along through my 4 days there. Last year I calculated 2 lbs of butter in Thanksgiving dinner. Goodness 2 lbs seems crazy but I bet it's not all that unusual in many kitchens on Thanksgiving. Thanks for the reminder to be mindful.

Norma said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE your last paragraph, particularly, Jane. TO HELL with other people and their f***ing commentary. Most of the people who take issue with what I eat/don't eat and feel the need to critique it couldn't get their arm into my pants leg, so I'm not sure why they feel I'd be interested in their opinion that I "eat too healthy." Sigh.

NewLife said...

Oh, good for you! Your dedication is awesome in the true sense of the word. Your bullshit meter doesn't let you get away with much, I bet you want to shut it up with some cheesecake sometimes! GOOD for you for keeping on top of the game everyday (even the holiday-type days - I find those SOOO hard).


Caron said...

The people who feel it's necessary to comment on how I eat are usually not small people. I don't say what I would like to say which is that I am healthier because I deprive myself of a lot of unnecessary non-food items. Mostly, I just smile and eat lots of salad. :)

Tiffany said...

I love this post

Unknown said...

Hi Jane! I absolutely adore this post!!! We know the truth about ourselves. We have years of detailed research about what makes us make bad choices against ourselves. So none of this is a surprise. Like you, I'd rather not play mind games with myself during the holiday season.

I'm going to eat "too restrictive" too. I'd rather be confident in my food choices than resent myself for gobbling food that makes me fat. You and I are going to look great in our jeans in January!

:-) Marion

Noxluna13 said...

This post sounds familiar. I think I have inner conversations with my BS meter too, however most of the time I don't listen to it's advice hence why the weight is still not melting away.

I have a gluten sensitivity so it makes it easy for me at holiday time to avoid those items that may have flour in them and not be so healthy for me. Which means much more veggies, a healthy for me portion of turkey and no desserts at all (due to everything having a crust or being a cake).

A said...

LOVE This!!