Whatever your relationship with food is like, it probably intensifies around the holidays. If you’re sticking to a special diet, you have to decide whether to keep it up or to say fuck it and take a day off to indulge. If your family’s eating habits annoy you, how fun! You’ll be watching them cook and eat all day. I’m going to suggest something radical: let’s just call a truce about all of that.
So don’t say you’re being “bad” as you take your third slice of pie. Keep any mention of calories away from the table—that’s just between you and MyFitnessPal.
But you know what else? If somebody else has eating habits different from yours, leave them the fuck alone. Your cousin brings cauliflower instead of mashed potatoes? Great, they brought food they want to eat, just like the rest of us did. If this bothers you, maybe you should have brought your own potatoes. (Pro tip: always volunteer to bring the thing you’re most excited about eating.)
I humbly recommend the following rules for your celebration. If you want to discuss getting everyone on board with them, that’s on you. But these should work just fine as your personal code of ethics, and each person who follows it will be making the meal a bit better for everyone else there. Here goes:
Indulge if you want.
Eat healthy if you want.
Feel free to mix the above two options at will.
Don’t comment on anybody else’s food choices.
And as always, never comment on anybody else’s body.
This includes the kids, by the way. (“You’re a foot taller since I last saw you!” is the one exception to the last rule.) They have 364 other days to eat their vegetables. Don’t push them to eat more. Don’t talk about your own food anxieties in front of them. Just let them eat their damn rolls in peace, like everyone else.