Handling the Holidays (and other social events)

As we close out the year, I know most of us are wooed by those incredibly nostalgic, mouth-watering, yet inflammatory-inducing comfort foods. So, I wanted to pop in to urge you to remain mindful through this very cozy season, so you can steer clear of the shame spirals and puddles of guilt.

No one wants that.

If you’re avoiding these foods to upgrade your health (and life!), BUT you’re anxious about how to stay on track through these potentially trying times, keep reading, because I’m going to share some power moves with you.

When you’re prepared for what’s to come, it becomes MUCH easier to navigate the terrain -- whether it’s the holidays, a social event or a casual get together.

Being mindful, especially during a season where indulgence is glorified and everything looks, smells, and tastes incredible, is essential. Unfortunately, the road to chronic disease - from autoimmunity to heart disease - is paved with sugar and refined carbohydrates. FACTS.

These foods are like a freeway that leads straight to insulin resistance, especially when given the right conditions -- being overweight and inactive.

Now, of course this isn’t going to happen overnight… hence “chronic” disease, HOWEVER, repeated behaviors become habits, so I encourage you to make the best choices for you and your long-term health and happiness. 

At this point, “chronic disease” might be sounding a bit too intense for you… maybe you can’t even identify with that term, because it seems SO far removed from your current state of vitality. 

But here’s the deal -- when we habitually indulge in sugars and simple carbs, it is wreaking silent havoc in all areas of our body:

  • In the digestive tract, carbs and sugar break down to glucose that the body uses for energy.
  • Beta cells in the pancreas make and secrete insulin into the blood. 
  • For any extra glucose you don’t use, this insulin delivers it to muscle, fat, and liver cells for storage (aka excess baggage, spare tire, muffin top)
  • Given the right conditions, and more glucose than your cells can manage at any given moment, the call goes out for even more insulin, which means MORE excess baggage
  • Beta cells keep the insulin flowing, but eventually, the body’s cells can’t absorb it or the glucose building up in your bloodstream, because the receptors have become numbed (aka insulin resistance)
  • Eventually, the beta cells can’t keep up, and the insulin levels plummet. Now the bloodstream is flooded with glucose, which damages nerves and blood vessels, causes inflammation, and leads to a host of chronic diseases

In short… it’s silently damaging your body.

If you know your body is falling down this slippery slope, you’re not alone, BUT the sooner you give those beta cells a break, the better your chances of avoiding insulin resistance down the road.

Insulin resistance is related to PCOS, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, cancer, cardiovascular disease, fatty liver disease and more.

So, if you’re ready to steer clear, here are a couple power moves for you.

First, it comes down to MINDSET.

I want you to swap out the term “I can’t have that” with “I choose not to have that”. 

It’s an immediate reframe that shifts you from feeling like a victim to an empowered goddess.

Second, having mindful meals is a GREAT way to bring more awareness to what you CHOOSE to put in your mouth, avoid overeating, absorb all those vital nutrients available to you and create a deeper connection to nourishment.

So, here’s the plan. I call it the 5 C’s:

  1. CHOOSE: Whole, REAL organic foods made with ingredients you recognize. Focus on high-quality animal protein, healthy fats and vegetables.
  2. CHERISH: Take a moment of gratitude before your first bite -- for the animals, plants, farmers, chefs and helpers that made your meal possible.
  3. CHILL: Avoid multitasking, which can decrease your nutrient absorption by up to 80% AND create awareness around your hunger/satiety signals.
  4. CHEW: Take time to chew your food -- the enzymes in your saliva help the initial breakdown process, which can help decrease gas, bloating and indigestion.
  5. CHECK: Keep an eye on your bowel habits -- your poop should sink, be a dark brown color with no food particles, blood or noticeable mucus.

There’s a saying that if you fail to prepare, you are preparing to fail.

So, go into the holidays with a plan!

If you found this information helpful, please share it with a friend or family member who needs to take action!

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