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Birthday Cake Culture

Updated 11/8/2018 in honor of the upcoming holiday season - there is always a reason to eat, but your health is a good reason to say no and choose real food!

I was looking through my Facebook page this morning and saw a great editorial about our Birthday cake culture and how it is one of the most dangerous things for our health. I have similar discussions every single day and I completely agree!

How many of you try so hard to stick to an eating plan and goal, only to have a celebration at work or home derail you? Someone's birthday deserves cake. Celebrate end of summer - root beer float day. Great job this week - cookie day. Just for the heck of it - ice cream sandwich day. There is always an excuse to eat - how can anyone survive without gaining weight? In the holiday season it is even worse, especially when people start bringing tins of cookies or candies to work. SML

It is difficult because we celebrate so many things with food! It is the easiest, cheapest way to reward a group of people. Most people don't care for a plate of cheese or olives, or a veggie platter as a way to say congratulations. Nuts for reward? Salami sticks? Sound really great, don't they? Probably not to most people.

We need a change in culture! But until that happens some strategies for this are: 1. change the way you think about foods - think of the cake or cookies as things that are not healthy but instead as toxic substances; 2. buy coffee or tea as a treat instead of sugary drinks or foods - add some cream with or without sugar free syrup to make it very satisfying; 3. avoid the room at work that the party is going on or where the food is sitting so you aren't tempted to eat the addictive foods; 4. go into the party with the attitude that you will say no and just enjoy the company and find the table with cheese, meats, veggies and nuts; 5. don't eat it just because the others want you to - you can either ignore the peer pressure or tell them that you are sugar/carb intolerant - all of us are; 6. teach your friends or coworkers how to eat more healthily - this takes time but is worth it when everyone starts making better choices.

I know it is very difficult to say no and to avoid these foods, but try to remember that these foods taste good and make you feel good for just a few minutes, and then make you feel bad for a whole lot longer. Work on remembering this when you are tempted at a work party or at a dinner party because there is always an excuse to eat... we need more excuses not to eat!

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