Many people associate holidays with a time of overindulgence, even if it’s not a food-centric holiday. Thanksgiving has copious amounts of comfort food. Christmas boasts holiday cookies, free-flowing eggnog, and sugar-heavy hot cocoa. Alcohol dominates the new year, and chocolate doesn’t treat Valentine’s Day any better.
One of the reasons behind the holiday gluttony is celebration. Many family members only see each other on certain holidays, and their merrymaking can go overboard unintentionally. While most people can manage the seasonal calorie-fest, it’s a different situation for bariatric patients.
Surviving Halloween After Weight Loss Surgery
Having a practical plan during the Halloween season can help you avoid the common candy pitfalls. The following are several tips to help you avoid temptation without alienating yourself during the festivities.
- Purchase candy you don’t like. You’re less likely to eye the candy bowl if you fill it with less tempting treats. The reverse is also true. You will struggle with cravings if you surround yourself with your favorite sweets.
- Hold off on buying candy. Some people opt to buy Halloween candy as soon as it hits the shelves. They don’t want to deal with the candy rush when others realize they need candy for trick or treaters ASAP. However, holding onto candy for up to two months provides ample time for you to give into impulse.
- Eat regular meals. Skipping meals or snacks leads to hunger every time. Your body releases hormones to drive food-seeking behaviors. Grabbing a piece of candy (or several) is much easier than preparing a healthy meal or snack, especially when your body is demanding food now.
- Eat before you go. Make sure you aren’t hungry before participating in Halloween activities. Whether you’re going trick or treating, to a party, or handing out candy, having a full stomach can reduce the urge to snack on sweets.
- Donate the leftovers. Some opt to take leftover candy into the office, but that just relocates the temptation. Several organizations accept candy donations. Many dentists participate in the Halloween Candy Buyback program, which purchases candy to send to veteran groups and support the troops.
- Try some dark chocolate. Strict denial of all things sweet isn’t reasonable, but neither is indulging every candy craving. Skip the traditional Halloween candy, and opt for some dark chocolate instead. Dark chocolate usually has fewer calories and grams of fat than milk chocolate. It also typically comes in convenient squares that make it easy to snap off a realistic portion.
Developing a game plan in advance of the holiday can help keep your diet on track this Halloween season. Contact us to learn more about life after bariatric surgery.