Well, my faithful friends ... how many of you managed to maintain your eating plan on Thanksgiving? Did you enjoy a little of everything without over-indulging? I am happy to say I did quite well and I learned something new about myself ... I CAN DO IT!! Granted I will have my moments when I will make poor choices, but I was thrilled to look at my Thanksgiving dinner plate and see 2/3 of the plate filled with roasted vegetables, a mere whisper of white meat turkey, a small serving of spicy sweet potatoes and some Heritage Lane Cranberry Sauce. There was even some space between my food and alas ... no gravy. My son sliced the pumpkin pie - my major downfall - and I noticed there were two sizes ... adult size and child size (½ of the adult size) and a small dollop of whipping cream. I opted for the child's size and I can’t tell you how wonderful I felt when I went to bed. I checked my Facebook account before I went bed on Thanksgiving night and noticed the number of friends who were STUFFED! I was so pleased with myself ... I went to bed with a smile on my face!
One thing I believe helped me stay focused is a bit of Internet research ... did you know the extra calories you eat don’t show up on the scale for several days?? The sites I found weren’t medically managed, but more blog-like with people’s experiences about how overeating affected them ... and it wasn’t good. Most said they noticed an increase on the scale days after they indulged. I sure didn’t want that - I’m still trying to fit into my skinny jeans! But more importantly, the effect of overeating on my heart was what made me stop.
Understand that overeating can have effects that you may not directly associate with eating excessively. For example, eating too much can lead to fatigue, insomnia and mood swings. It can also affect your joints and cause shortness of breath and chest pain. (Read more: How to Understand Overeating Effects.)
If you’re like me you don’t over-indulge every day so you’re probably not at risk of chronic overeating, but I think you, like me, should be aware of the downside of poor choices. Lifestyle changes are never easy and the obstacles you face ... relatives ... friends ... holidays ... provide a challenge every day. They say you can create a new habit after twenty-one days ... I find it takes even longer for me because ... well, just because that’s who I am! Who are you? How well do you know yourself? How willing are you to make a change for your heart’s health? How well do you know what challenges you face and how you will face them? A website I love is Zen Habits which provides me with a gentler way to reach personal goals. And if you're searching for another approach, try How to make new habits stick. Either way - or a way all your own - OWN IT! Asking yourself some important questions may shed some light on the solution you need for your health. C ‘mon ... you’re worth it!
Thanksgiving is just days away so to give you a leg up I’m here to cheer you on and while you likely have every intention of doing exactly what is right for your body, temptation is only a second helping away. I mean, really, it’s only once a year, so what the heck, right? Wrong.
Start with asking yourself a question, “what is your diet issue?” What is it that sets you off to eat either the wrong food or even too much of the right food? Know yourself and what triggers failure. Be prepared to be challenged and accept that challenge.
Here are a couple of tricks you can play on yourself to avoid the pitfalls of holiday eating:
So, here’s the bottom line - give it your best shot and ... should you indulge a bit more than you planned, don’t beat yourself up ... tomorrow is a new day.
I love pie. All pie. But pumpkin pie is probably my favorite. If I stopped at just one piece of pie I'd be fine, but I don't. During the next two months I could easily eat two whole pies all by myself! I know it isn't a very good idea and each year I promise myself I'll only have one piece at Thanksgiving and one piece at Christmas. And, for the record, I have never succeeded. I'm the kind of person who, once I have eaten one piece there's no stopping me or I avoid a piece all together and therefore succeeding. Why can't I just have a piece and call it a day? I had to find a better way to succeed and I think I have this year! If I could eat pumpkin pie that wasn't so fat/carb/calorie laden perhaps having more than one serving wouldn't be so bad. I hit the Internet in search of the perfect pumpkin pie and was amazed at what I found!
Heart Healthy Pumpkin-Maple Pie
Prep Time: 25 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Total Time: 1 h 10 mins
• 1 can(s) pumpkin
• 1/3 cup(s) maple syrup
• 1 tablespoon flour, all-purpose
• 1¼ cup(s) flour, all-purpose
• 2 packet(s) sugar substitute, heat-stable
• 1½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
• ¾ cup(s) refrigerated or frozen egg product, thawed
• 1 cup(s) milk, fat-free evaporated
• 1½ teaspoon vanilla extract
• frozen light whipped dessert topping, thawed
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• ¼ cup(s) milk, fat-free
• 3 tablespoon oil, cooking
In a medium bowl stir together 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Combine 1/4 cup fat-free milk and 3 tablespoons cooking oil; add all at once to flour mixture. Stir with a fork until dough forms. If necessary, add 1 to 2 teaspoons additional milk. Shape the dough into a ball.
Calories: 216, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 153mg, Dietary Fiber: 2g, Total Fat: 6g, Carbs: 32g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Protein: 8g
Exchanges: Dairy: 0.5, Starch: 1.5, Fat: 1
Carb Choices: 2
Crunchy Pumpkin Pie
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Nutritional Info (Per serving): Calories: 177, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 153mg, Total Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 24mg
To make Oat Crunch:
To make Pumpkin Mousse:
Obviously, there are endless ways to eat pumpkin pie even while keeping an eye on your heart's health; one simply needs to Google healthy pumpkin pie recipes or heart healthy pumpkin pie to net a wide variety of options.
So fear not, my friends, as the holidays approach stand firm, stand strong and fill your heart's desire with holiday delectable edibles … the heart healthy way.
I am ...
... a former blogger for a health site, which means eating healthy aka heart smart
which has become a passion for me. I will start at the beginning when I first
discovered I had high cholesterol.