Healthy Mind, Healthy Living: Rejecting Diet Mentality During The Holidays 

Healthy Mind, Healthy Living: Rejecting Diet Mentality During The Holidays 

Ana Martinez, Design Editor

If you experience the symptoms mentioned in the article, such as body dysmorphia, you are not alone and can reach out to:

As Thanksgiving approaches, many people anticipate the holidays and the meals that come with it; however, this means  many also may find it harder to navigate their relationship with food, a large factor in toxic diet culture. During these times, people should try to reject diet mentality in order to truly appreciate themselves and their bodies, and can do so through the following tips: 

Eat all three meals 

In anticipation for Thanksgiving, you may consider eating less daily — or not at all — to lose weight or to “save room” for calories during Thanksgiving dinner. Undereating can occur in several forms, including through calorie restriction and eliminating food groups, all of which can negatively affect your body. According to the National Centre of Eating Disorders, undereating can cause serious effects such as chilliness, restlessness and poor metabolism as the body tries to conserve the little energy it has. 

In general, you should aim to eat all three meals a day, which can reduce hunger. During and after Thanksgiving, you should eat whenever you feel hungry. 

Give yourself permission to eat as much as you would like 

You should feel like you can eat any food at the dinner table, because you can! A person should not restrict themselves from eating foods like pumpkin pie and mashed potatoes because they view them as “bad” or “unhealthy.” 

The reality of eating is that all foods in moderation can fit within a healthy diet, and you should consider this mindfully during Thanksgiving and throughout the holidays. During meals, pay careful attention to how your body feels when eating certain foods. You can choose which food looks good to you regardless of diet, and consume as much or as little of it as you want. This process allows you to fully appreciate and enjoy your meal. 

Appreciate your fullness

During the holidays, you should respect and appreciate the feeling of fullness during meals. Many people have special, rare meals for Thanksgiving, so as a result, you should appreciate and eat as much as you would like to. When eating, you should notice how your body feels; however, you can also eat past your normal comfort during holidays. 

Love your body image

Before and after Thanksgiving, you should love and appreciate your body. Eating a meal during Thanksgiving does not permanently change your body’s appearance since bloating is temporary, so you should indulge without feeling any guilt. Thus, you should not feel the need to compensate for Thanksgiving food by eating less. 

During Thanksgiving, you can also spread body positivity, not only to yourselves but to others, too, to eliminate the stigma that makes people feel guilty about their bodies and their food choices. Instead, enforce the truth that all bodies remain beautiful, regardless of a Thanksgiving meal.  

All in all, you should not adopt a diet mentality during the holidays. Thanksgiving only lasts one day and does not have any drastic impact on your health. Enjoy this holiday without going through the stress of health or body image if possible, because the point of this holiday is to share meals and enjoy the company of others.