It’s that time of year when you tell yourself “I won’t eat ____ at this party, and I’ll have a plate of veggies.” But it happened anyways. Annoying, but for those of us with digestive issues, it’s more than that. Instead of a ‘little bloating,’ or ‘a few pounds’ gained, we deal with bloating so much that we look 6 months pregnant, stomach pains that leave us on the floor, and bathroom runs that scare us. If you’re like me though, you don’t want to feel completely deprived when you’re hitting up all the holiday parties. Where’s the fun in that? So my friend, I’m dropping some gut healthy holiday eating tips and a digestion-friendly meal plan below.
Navigating the holiday party
If you’re going to someone’s house, plan ahead. Seriously. Spend a whopping 5-10 minutes and you’ll thank me for this.
Find out what will be served
If possible, ask the host what kinds of foods and drinks will be served so you’ll know ahead of time how to prepare. That may include bringing your own dish to ‘share,’ packing a healthy snack and hiding out (who says you can’t eat a Bulletproof bar in the bathroom?), or making sure you don’t show up entirely hungry.
While you shouldn’t restrict food, make sure to focus on drinking plenty of water. Sometimes that hunger is actually a sign of thirst. And, if you get dehydrated and let those hunger cravings rage outta control, you’ll likely eat those trigger foods you know aren’t a great option for you, and you’ll pay the price for it later. If you’re grabbing a glass of bubbly or a holiday cocktail, definitely make sure to drink a glass of water before and after that drink.
Yes, it’s ok if you say no to items. Especially if you know that those items will be causing pain later on that evening. Most gatherings will have at least a few items you can say yes to, so scan the table and make those ‘yes’ choices wise.
Offer to host
Seriously, it’s not that bad. I really enjoy hosting because I know that it allows me to control the menu. And if you don’t want to get stuck cooking or ordering everything, have a few friends bring dishes to share. Similarly, you can go to a friends gathering and offer to bring a few dishes. Many times the host appreciates this as they don’t have to be responsible for the entire menu. Just make sure you don’t show up with your 80’s Tupperware if they’re serving items on crystal plates. 😉
Oops, you did it again
Sometimes, regardless of how good your intentions are, you mess up. Been there. So, a couple things I like to do:
In the morning, make a little lemon elixir. Take 2 cups of room temperature water, and add the juice from 1/2 a lemon and a tablespoon of raw apple cider vinegary. Stir up and drink. This will help cleanse the body and balance out some of the acid in your gut.
If you’re really suffering, take an activated charcoal. This will pull out the nastiness you ate and help you feel a bit better. Just make sure you take it away from supplements and medications, because it’ll also pull those out.
Get moving. Make sure you get some type of activity the next day. That could be the gym, 10 minutes of stretching, or even a nice walk in nature. Sweating will help eliminate those toxins and help move digestion along.
Mapping out Thanksgiving and Christmas menus (yes, already) had me all excited to share this holiday menu with you all. Gluten, dairy, and refined sugar free of course, since those are three of the most common triggers for those of us with digestive issues.
Mushroom, bacon and cauliflower casserole
Green bean casserole
Sweet potato casserole
Wild rice salad with apples and pecans
Pumpkin whoopie pies
Hopefully you now feel armed and ready to take on the Holidays! I’d love to know- what does your holiday menu look like? Drop me a line or post below!