Re-Cap: Eating Through the Holidays

The “Eating Through the Holidays” seminar went great the other night! Thanks for those of you who ventured out on a Wednesday night… middle of the week is always a struggle for me, so I know it’s not easy! I wanted to post some highlights from the other night, as well as the recipes.  By the way… I still have cheesecake in my fridge and freezer… what happened to me not taking any home?!? Anyways, enjoy the recipes, and let me know if you have any questions!  And, don’t forget, early bird pricing for the New Year Challenge ends on Sunday!  Get signed up!

Highlights from the seminar:

  • Choose your food, don’t let it choose you.
    • Remember, don’t make bad food choices just because it is there and in front of you.  If you want to eat a cookie, or a whole pizza, YOU make the choice to do that (and enjoy it), but don’t make the choice just because it was there. 
  • Sometimes, you just have to eat the cake.
    • Every day is someone’s birthday, national ice cream, cookie, donut, or some other crappy food day, so I’m not saying over-do it, but just remember that sometimes you just have to eat the cake too.  Don’t be that person that people avoid because your eating habits are such a pain and you unknowingly make everybody else feel extremely uncomfortable (yeah, I’ve been that person)
  • If you didn’t learn anything else from the other night, just remember how much sugar was in those delicious holiday drinks (peppermint mochas, caramel brulees, etc)… upwards of 50g in some of them!
  • What did we learn about alcohol?
    • You’re body gets busy when you start drinking alcohol- your body has to prioritize processing the alcohol and may not process other things/nutrients properly. 
    • So, I’m not saying don’t drink, but remember these tips:
      • Drink a full glass of water in between each drink you have (FULL GLASS PEOPLE, NOT A SIP)
      • Sparkling water—while still horrible for your teeth- choose the right one and there is no sugar. So, you can still have your “drink” while at a party, but skip some of the side effects and empty calories. ALSO, it fills you up some too… bubbles in my tummy make me full!
      • There are always fun mocktail recipes out there too!
      • And remember alcohol usually inhibits our decision making process… so that plate of cookies that you were definitely saying no to before the wine slowly becomes a “maybe I’ll have one” to a “might as well eat the whole plate” after a couple glasses of wine.
  • Some tips and tricks to managing parties:
    • Use a small plate- you can only fit so much food on a small plate!
    • Fill your plate with meat and veggies first!
    • Don’t go to parties hungry- eat a snack or a small meal before you go.
    • Don’t deprive yourself to a point where you just go home and eat a whole pizza and a gallon of ice cream (binge anyone?).  Find what works for you and if that means a small something here and there, then do that… but if your like me and your mentality is “welp, ate one, may as well eat them all”, then be careful!
    • Take healthy alternatives to parties
      • Veggie trays
      • Meat/cheese platters
      • Alternative treats (aka paleo pumpkin cheesecake😊)
    • DON’T GET BULLIED IN TO EATING FOOD YOU DON’T WANT… don’t let “Susan” at the office bully you in to eating the fudge she made and brought into the office (that probably doesn’t even look good).  She will say “but you have to try it” or “just a little bit wont hurt” and you can just tell her to shove it.  She’s just trying to bring you down.  If you are concerned about hurting “Susan’s” feelings, you can always lie and tell her you’re allergic to something, or you can simply tell her you’ve been working very hard on making good food choices and you’ve been doing really well, while you appreciate her offer, you would also appreciate her respecting your decision to not partake… and that will shut her mouth in two seconds… and I would also love to see her face when you say it!
  • At the end of the day, know that there are 105 meals in the holiday season (Thanksgiving to New Year’s day) , so if you follow an 80/20 rule (80% good food choices, 20% not as ideal) there could be 21 meals that were maybe not so great.  That’s a lot of meals! So, I am not encouraging you guys to indulge in every single one of those 21 meals to get that 20%, but that’s just to give you some perspective. 

Those were the main highlights, minus the cheesecake sampling… and here’s what you’re all waiting for…

Pumpkin Cheesecakes

  • What you will need:
    • Muffin tin or mini muffin tin
    • Muffin liners
    • Food processor or blender
      • FOR THE CRUST:
        • 1 Cup pecans
        • ¾ Cup almond flour
        • 3 TBS coconut oil (melted)
        • 1 TBS coconut sugar
        • ½ tsp cinnamon
        • ¼ tsp salt

FOR THE FILLING:

  • 1 Cup of cashews (soaked)
    • 1/3 Cup full-fat coconut milk
    • 1/4 Cup coconut oil melted
    • ½ cup pureed pumpkin
    • ¼ cup maple syrup (more to taste)
    • 1 TBS apple cider vinegar
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • ½ tsp ground ginger
    • ½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
    • ½ tsp cinnamon or to taste
    • ¼ tsp sea salt

DIRECTIONS:

FOR CRUST:

  • Place all ingredients for the crust in your food processor or blender and pulse until combined.
  • Line your muffin tin with liners and place a heaping spoon of the crust mixture into the liner.  Press it down into the liner with your fingers.

FOR THE FILLING:

  • ***TIME SENSITIVE STEP HERE***
    • You must soak the cashews for 3 hours or overnight before using them. If you are in a hurry because you forgot this step, you can boil water and pour over cashews in a bowl and cover for about an hour.
    • Drain your cashews and add to processor/blender.
    • Place all remaining ingredients in the processor and blend until smooth.  Taste filling and add cinnamon, sweetener or salt to taste. 
    • Pour filling over crust in liners.
    • Place in refrigerator for atleast 3 hours.  You can freeze for 2 hours, but then have to thaw for a couple of hours. 
    • Enjoy!

Chocolate Mint Variation

  • Crust remains the same
  • Filling:
    • 1 Cup cashews (soaked)
    • 1/3 Cup full fat canned coconut milk
    • 2 TBS coconut oil melted
    • ½ cup Cacao powder (or cocoa, whatever works)
    • 2TBS maple syrup (more to taste)
    • ½ tsp peppermint extract
    • ½ TBS apple cider vinegar
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • ¼ tsp salt

*follow the same instructions. Make the crust, then throw all of the filling in the food processor, blend and fill. 

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