December 2019 Q&A: Healthy Holiday Eating with Leslie Bonci, Owner-Active Eating Advice
Posted December 16, 2019
Clinch Not Grinch- Here’s to Positivity and Productivity this Holiday Season
Here we are again, at the end of the year, ready for some feasting, friendship and fun. Yet if visions of sugar plums make you feel guilty, you may deprive yourself rather than thrive over this holiday season.
Let’s look back and do a recap of the diets and eating trends of the year and hopefully I will offer you some strategies that make you cheer not tear.
Too many quacks, disputing the facts
Added fear to what we eat
Cleanses are cool, enhanced waters rule
Plant based substitutes for meat
Juicing is hot, food waste is not
Vegetables now swap for grains
Plants in our pour, snacks that do more
And foods that MIND our brain
Prebiotics, probiotics, fermentation’s in
Avocado, vegan, keto
Foods we choose are more than macros
Let’s not food fight, enjoy every bite
And take the time to chew
There’s room on the plate for food that tastes great
For a happy, healthy you
There is a lot of food bullying, shaming, and guilt encompassing everything from gluten, GMO, sugar, dairy, and meat. And while many of us intentionally eliminate foods from our plate there are too many people who are in great need because they do not have enough to eat.
In addition to the confusion on the plate there are too many so called nutrition experts weighing in with evidence based on the listserv not the literature. This results in unnecessary food avoidance and phobia based on opinion rather than fact.
We are all entitled to eat within our salary cap, our calorie cap and be nourished with foods we enjoy, based upon our food preferences, medical needs, and culinary ability. We don’t need hydrogenated or alkaline waters. Our bodies are very good at eliminating toxins without the help of a cleanse.
For those who choose to be meat-less, that does not mean protein deficient. There are many palatable and affordable plant-based meat alternatives that can be eaten alone or used as a base for chili, tacos, meatballs, and soups. Rather than cut out grains, we can cut down and at the same time, ramp up our produce intake through the versatile and flavorful vegetable-based rice and noodles, as well as cauliflower pizza crusts.
Eating fruit and vegetables provides the chew and versatility that we don’t get through juicing. If you opt for a non-dairy milk alternative, do be selective with your pour to ensure that you are getting more nutritionally.
We all know that it is important to take care of our heart, mind our waist and move our body, but we should pay as much attention to our brain and incorporate foods such as fatty fish, berries, olive oil, nuts, beans and whole grains.
Taking good care of our gut is more than planks and crunches but also consuming food sources of prebiotics, probiotics, and fermented products. Add yogurt, kefir, pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, and even kombucha to your diet to support a healthy gut.
It’s ok to try a food trend but the focus should be more on what you do rather than don’t eat. If you like animal protein, a vegan diet may not be wise. If you enjoy carbs, the keto diet may not be one to try. Avocados are great but they are not the only type of fat that must go on your toast, bowl or plate.
Enough with body bashing, and food trashing. Let’s make peace with our plate, let’s enjoy foods that taste great and let’s make this a season to celebrate. Create an enabled table with people you love, foods that excite and memories that delight.
Leslie Bonci, MPH,RDN,CSSD,LDN
Owner-Active Eating Advice by Leslie