But there seems to be an unwritten rule we can eat whatever we want in November and December because "It's the holidays!"
Compounding this culture of licentiousness, January 1st is right around the corner; so all we have to is make a New Year's resolution to lose weight then.
The problem is most people say they'd be happy just to break even during the holiday season, but few of us manage to get through this caloric minefield without packing on at least five pounds.
Last year I was fortunate enough to have started Medifast a month before Halloween; so my motivation level was at its peak. My early success with fat melting made it easier for me to say "no" to the goodies around me, though I made occasional exceptions.
This year will be tougher because I am at my ideal weight. What harm will come from eating some stuffing or cookies?
Probably not much. Especially since I weigh myself daily and have only five pounds to play with.
Once I am at my five pound max I am really strict about what I eat. It's like having a five-dollar bill in my wallet: once I spend it, I have to earn some of it back before I can spend it again.
Which means I have to be very selective about if and when I eat foods that contain refined carbohydrates.
If I know I'm going to a party that night, I'll eat really clean during the day and select only one or two high
glycemic foods to sample.
If I'm at a restaurant, I'll allow myself to have some bread or some dessert or some wine -- but not all three.
At work, I'll view the holiday treats as decorations and indulge as infrequently as possible.
Because once I spend my five pounds, I have to earn them back.
Helping me in this battle against the holiday bulge are some of the tricks I've learned since doing Medifast. Like eating more protein, fiber and fat, which keeps me full and satisfied so I'm less tempted to stray; and substituting healthier treats for the ones around me.
And, perhaps most importantly, I now have the knowledge that being loosey goosey about what I eat does not make me happier. Just larger.