Ah, the holidays! Time for meals with friends and family, parties where food and drink are served, snacks and treats brought to the office. Yum!
But some of us are being more conscientious about how we eat. Maybe you’re “that one” at work or in the family that is the picky eater.
While you are a member of a significant portion of the population (approximately 16 million in the US are vegetarian and half of those are vegan), you still may well be the only one at the party that isn’t drooling over the latest bacon-wrapped sensation. And even those who eat meat may still only do so when the meat is from a humane source.
So, what to do?
Here are a few tips that I use. Feel free to add your own in the comments section!
For potlucks, I bring a filling dish that I will enjoy. Last week we had a breakfast, and I cooked eggs that I bought, so I knew where they came from. Today we’re having a potluck Thanksgiving lunch, and I’m bringing green beans. Sure, they’ll look plain beside all the yummy casseroles and desserts, but there will be something I know I will want to eat.
Dinner party? Talk to the host ahead of time. Explain what your eating habits are like. Offer to bring a dish or your own food if need be. But don’t do like I have in the past and decline the offer. You’re being invited because your presence is desired. Honor that, and go.
Mix and mingle where snacks are served? Forego the food. We’ve been told for years that the way to avoid packing on extra pounds over the holidays is to eat before you go to these events. It’s still good advice for those of us who want to eat healthier. And find the veggie tray. Practically every party has one. Yum!
Ask yourself what you can live with. In addition to a more animal-friendly diet, I am also choosing a low-sugar diet today for my health. And yet, holiday treats are everywhere: commercials, magazine covers, at work. ACK! My mantra is just for today, I want to be healthier more than I want to eat that treat. Doesn’t mean I don’t want the treat. Just means I want something else far more.
Finally, my number one tip is to always be gracious. Unless you were one of those that came out of the womb with a raised awareness of the plight of animals, you can recall a time when eating animals was just a thing people did. Remember that others are not where you’re at. And while it might be tempting to use the opportunity to jump on that soap box of yours, the holidays is not the time to do it.
Of course, if they ask…….. LOL
Enjoy your celebrations, whatever they may be!