By Bobbie Randall
December 23, 2013
During the holidays food is everywhere and eating is a popular topic to discuss. Let’s get this straight: there are no good foods or bad foods. Anything that is not illegal or poisonous can fit into a healthy meal plan. The idea is not to banish certain foods but to control the amount.
Cakes, cookies, pies, candy, sugary soda pop, gravy, dips, fried foods and marbled meats will not kill anyone. They are not bad. They are not evil. They are not forbidden.
In fact, they can be very tasty to the palate and yummy to the tummy. Instead of branding sweet and fatty treats forbidden no-no foods control the amount consumed and satisfy your taste buds. It is the amount of treats that should be labeled cautious.
Second helpings, three to six cookies, handfuls of candy, endless glasses of sugary carbonation, supersized pieces of pie and cake, extra dips of dip or gravy, meals of only things fried and many marbled meats sabotage healthy meal plans.
Cakes, cookies, pies, candy, sugary soda pop, gravy, dips, fried foods and marbled meats are good to eat. Vast amount of cakes, cookies, pies, candy, sugary soda pop, gravy, dips, fried foods and marbled meats are bad to eat.
The correct way of referring to the last paragraph is to exchange the words, good and bad, with healthy and unhealthy. Terms like good and bad and better and worse are opinions, feelings and moral judgments.
Thinking of food as healthy or unhealthy puts the function of the act of chewing and swallowing into a more physiological term. A little is healthy but a lot is unhealthy.
Feeling deprived of cakes, cookies, pies, candy, sugary soda pop, gravy, dips, fried foods and marbled meats increases the yearning to eat them even more. Indulging in a smaller amount, satisfies the taste buds, makes you a polite guest and controls the calories consumed.
The food police that measure every treat that passes your lips backs off when controlled intake is observed. Good judgment replaces bingeing and a loose waistband replaces strangulation of your midsection.
Consider this: Eat only things that are truly your favorites. If you would not risk a snow storm to buy a so-called forbidden treat, it is not a favorite. Run, do not walk away from the buffet table.
Dilute sweet punch, egg nog, sugary soda pop and adult beverages with water to limit the amount swallowed. At parties keep a glass in your hand at all times to avoid an impulsive grab at the snack table.
Smile, laugh, talk and play. These activities engage the same muscles used in chewing. When a person laughs and eats at the same time it can get very colorful and messy.
Treats are treats, not the main course. Treat them accordingly.
Bobbie Randall is a certified diabetes educator and a registered, licensed dietitian. She supervises a diabetes self-management training program at Aultman-Orrville Hospital, Orrville. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or 330-684-4776.