New Castle News

November 19, 2013

Kali Davies-Anderson: Go ahead and indulge — it’s the holidays

Kali Davies-Anderson
New Castle News

NEW CASTLE — Whether we are ready or not, the holidays are quickly approaching and we all know what that means:

An array of unusually delicious foods, often cooked by other people, at our complete disposal for nearly two months.

Whether you are spending quiet time at home with your immediate family, traveling long distances or jumping from house to house, the holidays can be very hectic and the food, it seems, is our reward for being willing to participate in the festivities.

Throughout the year people on social networks seem to be constantly talking about dieting, exercise, “clean eating” and everything else that has to do with staying fit.

I find it somewhat humorous that these are the same people boasting about devouring entire family size servings of mashed potatoes and whole pies.

But isn’t that what the holidays are REALLY about? Overeating?

My answer to this is YES.

I mean, when else is it acceptable to eat FOUR five-course dinners in ONE day?

Your answer to that should be NEVER.

That said, I believe that Thanksgiving is the biggest culprit in the holiday overeating fest.

Let’s face it, the Thanksgiving holiday is the prototype for overindulgence.

With no church services, no presents to open and no fireworks to light up the sky, this holiday offers no distractions from food.

When I wake up on Thanksgiving morning the first thought that pops in my head is turkey. I am sorry that my first thought is not about all of the people and things that I am thankful for — that comes later. Turkey takes precedence. Turkey, followed by mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie and loved ones.

The biggest challenge with a holiday like thanksgiving, however, is deciphering a way to eat two or three full meals without getting so uncomfortable that you can no longer be a mother to your children.

The first, and possibly most important factor, in maintaining full function ability on Thanksgiving is wardrobe.

You will never, I repeat NEVER, find me wearing jeans on Thanksgiving. It just won’t happen.  Nor will you find me donning a form-fitting dress or sweater.

If you know you are going to eat a week’s worth of food in a few hours, why would you wear something as constricting as denim or as revealing as spandex?

For thanksgiving eating I suggest a flowing A-line waist blouse and a pair of really stretchy leggings for the ladies and the loosest pants and sweater possible for the men.  After all, are there many things more embarrassing than having to undo the top button on your pants because you lost self-control at the cookie table?

The next key to Thanksgiving eating is to pace yourself and to not go all in too quickly. If you need to take an extra breath in between bites, you have had enough.

I know you haven’t laid eyes on stuffing for a year, but there is no need to eat a portion as large as a regulation volleyball.

Plan your meals out ahead of time, if possible.

Does Grandma have delicious turkey but sub-par desserts? Does Aunt Esther make a mean cranberry sauce but bland potatoes?

I suggest taking notes every year and recording the best of each meal. That way, you can constantly keep your eye on the prize without overindulging on any one entrée.

And lastly, if at the end of the day, you feel like you could squeeze in ONE more serving of something, have at it.

If you have a hankering for some mashed potatoes, it doesn’t matter if it’s 11:30 p.m. Give thanks for a hearty appetite and go to town.

After all, it’s only once or twice (or perhaps thrice) a year.