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Getting through the Holidays, Staying in Control

separator Does "Just This Once" Apply?

"It's the first celebration of the holiday season. I'll treat myself just this once." Have you heard yourself saying that very thing? If it really is just once, it's probably okay. But for most of us, there's Thanksgiving, and then a few parties, and then maybe Christmas, and then New Year's Eve. Not to mention other special occasions throughout the year-birthdays, cookouts, picnics, anniversaries, etc. If you're ditching your food plan "just this once" many times during the year, it might be time to recommit to healthy eating.

Don't Let Thanksgiving Make you Sick

The US Department of Agriculture estimates the average American male consumes 7,500 calories at Thanksgiving dinner. That's enough to make anyone with diabetes feel pretty bad after dinner. Is it worth it?

Don't sit down to dinner hungry. You'll feel more in control that way. Decide ahead of time which foods you'll eat. If you're a guest at someone's home, before you sit down to the meal you may choose to whisper to the host that you need to watch what you're eating. Keep your portions small and eat slowly.

Resist Sabotage from Loved Ones

You've heard it before-"Oh, go on, you look great. You can eat this pie." "Come on, it's Thanksgiving. Have some more mashed potatoes." "You don't have very much on your plate. Here, take some more."

All you can do is prepare yourself ahead of time, smile and refuse gently. People will get over it.

Beyond Food: Other Ways to Celebrate

There's nothing wrong with changing traditions a little. Suggest focusing on something besides food. Create new traditions. Playing cards or other games, going for walks, going to somebody's house for a visit, going to the movies-things like this will get you up and away from the table.

C. Ezrin, R. Kowalski. The Type 2 Diabetes Diet Book. Lowell House Publishing, Chicago, Illinois, 60646-1975, 1999; E. Gehling. The Family and Friends Guide to Diabetes. John Wiley & Sons, Inc., New York, New York, 10158-0012, 2000.
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