3 Rules to Enjoy Seasonal Foods Without Wrecking Your Waistline

I’m not into the shame game.

I know you’ve been looking forward to your _______________ (fill in the blank with candy corn, oktoberfest beer, pumpkin spice latte, cider donuts . . . ), just like you looked forward to the Valentine hearts, peeps and Cadbury creme eggs. And, I know I’m probably not going to convert (completely!) your cult-like desires to get you excited for figs, pomegranates or heavenly sweet potatoes instead.

But I don’t want to make you feel bad about that. Let’s be realists. You’re thinking “OMG, (again, your blank) are BACK!!!” and then panicking with feelings that “they’ll only be available for 3 more weeks” only to find that you’re, ahem, pants don’t fit by the end of the month.

I’m here to help. If you need to find a way to indulge in the seasonal foods you have mad love for without having to loosen your buckle before the next season hits, you’ve come to the right place.

3 Rules to Enjoying Seasonal Foods Without Wrecking Your Waistline:

1.  Grant yourself permission. I had a client with a self proclaimed addiction to peanut butter cups. She’d hit the vending machine hard around 3 o’clock, indulge her choco-pb habit, then throw away her healthy diet and “hate” herself the rest of the day.

The first assignment I gave her was to go out and buy a peanut butter cup, IF, and only if, she truly craved it. She was not allowed to go to the work vending machine and buy it. She had permish to indulge in it if she took the time to assess the craving (was it just work boredom? habit?) and then decide if she would go out and buy it. Know what? As soon as she had permission, she realized she didn’t “need” them as much as she thought she did.

Give yourself permission to have your favorite fall treat! Eating foods just for the sake of pleasure, in a conscious and deliberate way, is all part of healthy eating and will not zap your healthy diet.

For the record, that client now regularly chooses healthy snacks like hummus and crudites or almonds and yogurt instead of peanut butter cups and has been doing uh-mazing.

2. Plan, plan, plan! Each and every one of us is unique and what works for one of us, may not work for another. But here are a few tips to help you plan your treats. Try to:

  • indulge in your fall goodies twice a week and give up another conscious indulgence to make that happen (meaning you may have to give up your usual serving of fries that you look forward to on the weekend, so you can eat the cider donut).
  • get it out of your system and buy one bag of candy corn and add 5 pieces to the 10 almonds you have between breakfast and lunch until it’s gone.
  • make a date with a friend to enjoy and indulge in (fill in the blank again!) and follow it up with a long walk to catch up.

3. Be mindful and deliberate. Its a sad thing when I hear a client tell me that they indulged in their fave indulgence and “didn’t even taste it” because they were beating themselves for eating the treat before they even finished it. Don’t fall into that trap. Make it a conscious indulgence, eat slowly, enjoy every bite and remember every meal is a Monday morning. Make the next thing to hit your lips uber healthy.

Grant yourself permission, plan your treat and ENJOY it! Slow down by using a plate and real napkin.

Do not take a nibble while texting, hailing a taxi, watching TV, chatting on the phone or opening up your mail. Be present and in the moment. After all, the seasons change quickly.

Bookmark this blog. Refer to it in the winter, when Santa Claus is comin’ to town, in spring when the Easter chocolates are everywhere and again in the summertime when the ice-cream truck is ringing for you!


About Nutritious Life Editors

The Nutritious Life Editors are a team of healthy lifestyle enthusiasts who not only subscribe to — and live! — the 8 Pillars of a Nutritious Life, but also have access to some of the savviest thought leaders in the health and wellness space — including our founder and resident dietitian, Keri Glassman. From the hottest trends in wellness to the latest medical science, we stay on top of it all in order to deliver the info YOU need to live your most nutritious life.

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