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Thank you so much for allowing me a place in your heart and mind with this writing and work.  Know that I believe you can be free from your food and weight worries and want to hear about your concerns.

Today, to get ready for Thanksgiving (here in the US) we are going to make some concrete plans on how to handle holiday eating without feeling out of control (OOC) or restricted.

I know it can be hard to make plans to set boundaries or take risks with food and people.  The great thing is, the Thanksgiving can set the stage for other learning experiences during your journey towards complete healing from diet and eating disorder recovery.

My suggestion for you today is to answer the following questions:

·         Where will you be on Thanksgiving?  ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

·         What foods do you anticipate being served? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

·         If you didn’t worry about the calories in any food, what would you want to eat? ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

·         Now, circle the foods that you would feel concerned about eating.

·         And finally, think about the place, the people and any feelings that come up around eating these foods in this circumstance and write that here.  How would feel not to have what you want?  How can you eat foods you like/want and feel okay about it?________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Part II

If you are on a meal plan and purposely trying to eat more (and good for you by the way to be re-nourishing yourself), let’s talk about how to plug in at least one “challenge food” into your Thanksgiving meal.

Some people choose to make Thanksgiving a little bit higher energy day and leave it at that, without compensating.  It’s good practice for learning how to trust the body to handle a little more food without much of anything happening with your body.  Also, it is good if you may need to increase your meal anyway.

If this is feeling too scary, remember that food can be broken down into “components” so that you can incorporate it in.  For example, if you are really wanting a piece of pie and feeling comfortable eating it with the people you will be around, then this is a good situation to do it in.  Pumpkin pie is essentially a 2 fats and 1 grain/carbohydrate.  Break down food for what it is so you are less likely make it more calories in your mind than what it is.

If you are coming to Thanksgiving with fears of over-eating and have not been under-eating prior, I recommend the following steps
1)  Do not under-eat starting now if you have been, but especially Thanksgiving morming.  If you get too hungry it’s hard to stop once we get going sometimes.

2) Plan to eat according to hunger and fullness, with permission to take breaks in the meals to assess your fullness levels as the meal goes along.  Use my hunger and satiety scale with the food journal to practice

3)  Give full permission to eat what you really want.  My first Thanksgiving I was practicing as an intuitive, attuned eater, I vowed to only eat what I really wanted.  It was very freeing to eat my favorite foods, leave behind foods that I knew were tasty but I was less interested in for varying reasons (they were “second best” foods, I could get them more regularly, etc).

My plate consisted of some turkey, stuffing, chicken and dumplings, a small amount of green beans and a large piece of my grandma’s orange coconut cake.  There were probably 3x the options other than this, but these were all my favorites and I wanted to be full AND satisfied without being stuffed with eating foods I wanted but eating through other foods to get there.

How do you want your plate to look?  How do you want to feel?  You can decide that now.

Happy Thanksgiving!  Share this with anyone you think could use the help 🙂