You and Your Atkins Lifestyle Can Survive the Holidays
that time of year again when the joys of the holidays
can be mixed with apprehension.
many of you remember years past when food and drink got
the best of you and it took months to get back on track?
It neednít be that way.
us have embraced the concept that a diet is short term--
a lifestyle lasts forever. But to permanently and
successfully adopt a lifestyle change you need to learn
how to cope with the many stresses, social events, and
the eating and drinking opportunities you are exposed to
this time of year.
donít learn new ways to cope, youíll likely repeat the
same pattern that sabotaged you in years past.
a few strategies you can adopt now so when the New Year
comes along you wonít need to find a larger size and can
be free of the guilt trip you have taken in the past.
realistic. No one can be 100 percent 100 percent of the
time. However, that doesnít mean you should feel free to
abandon your program on a regular basis.
plan on momentarily straying from your Atkins path
without getting lost, you need to learn how to ďcheatĒ
appropriately. This means accepting less than 100
percent perfection without surrendering to feelings of
guilt or failure. This is especially important for
stress eaters who use food to try to cope with negative
emotions. Negotiating the ďgray areasĒ can be difficult,
but once you know how, you are much better able to lose
weight and keep it off.
the Right Time
youíre just starting the program and are on Induction
this is not the time to plan cheats. In the early stages
of this new way of eating you are establishing good
eating patterns and correcting your unstable chemistry
that leads to hunger and cravings. You are vulnerable
for the first few weeks. Cheating before you have become
secure with your new way of eating could make it
difficult to resume, to say nothing of re-establishing
have been doing well on your Atkins Lifestyle it is ok
to temporarily change your goal from continuing to lose
weight. Instead, aim to maintain your weight and stay in
control of your food choices. This will allow you to
temporarily liberalize your diet by experimenting with
higher carbs as long as they are still healthy foods.
However, be advised that this is not a good option if
you intend to return regularly to an intake of foods
with added sugars and refined carbs. You will only
re-establish your addictions and lose control. This is
also not a good idea if you have medical issues such as
diabetes, etc. that will worsen with a more liberal
liberalizing the plan for a short time over the holidays
youíll have an opportunity to experiment with learning
the all important Lifetime Maintenance phase of Atkins.
your weight loss efforts 100% no matter what on January
every special occasion merits cheating. Taking too many
liberties will not get you to your goal. Make sure your
planned indulgence is well worth it and make sure that
you really, really want itónot just in the abstract, but
at the moment the food is in front of you. Sure,
Grandmaís potato pancakes only appear once a year, but
when the platter comes your way, do you honestly feel
like you canít pass them up?
advantage of the many low-carb recipes available in
books and the Internet. They can help you find workable
alternatives to some favorite holiday foods so you can
more easily maintain your weight and still participate
in the warmth of sharing holiday meals with family and
Yourself a Cushion
thereís a special occasion on the horizon, consider
dropping down to a lower phase of Atkins for a bit
before that occasion. Adhering more strictly to the plan
will help you feel more in control and perhaps help you
lose a few more pounds. By the time the event rolls
around, you can have a generous margin of error in case
you do wind up overindulging.
Go Whole Hog
that you can deviate intelligently without reinforcing
your old habits. Letís say youíre dining in a restaurant
known for its spectacular desserts. If you must have
that double chocolate mousse then vow to avoid the bread
and all other high carb foods. Keep to an nduction-type
meal. Better yet, share that dessert rather than eat it
all. Even though you have deviated by having dessert,
youíre not reinforcing old habits and youíre still in
Back on Track Fast
in advance how long you intend to stray from your usual
program. Resume it the minute that time frame expires.
For example, if youíre someone whose intention was to be
off of your program for Thanksgiving dinner only, yet by
the following Monday you found yourself munching on
leftovers, this is another opportunity to learn that you
can keep your word to yourself.
the Lesser of Evils
every indulgence needs to be a blowout. If an orange
will satisfy youíre sweet craving, itís better than
cookies. Reach for an extra helping of allowable foods
such as cheese, vegetables, or salad before ordering a
bowl of pasta.
Back in the Saddle
having trouble getting back on the program? Have you
gained a few? Craving carbs again? Resume your
supplements and exercise program even if youíre still
sloppy with your foods. By taking control back with
these habits, you can then put your full attention to
making better food choices. Both supplements and
exercise will help support your body after your dietary
to square one. If you have gained more than a pound or
two or have re-established your addictions resume
Induction. Clean out all inappropriate food in your
house, stock up with what you need and be as committed
as you were at the start. It is very helpful to re-read
Dr. Atkinsí New Diet Revolution to get back in the
mind-set of success.
youíve lost control of food choices, you may feel like
you have failed. The positive spin is that you have
probably learned something. What made you lose control?
How might you deal with that same situation in the
future? If you have learned more about yourself and your
food issues that can help you succeed in the future,
than you havenít failed. Failure is a choice. If you
choose to resume the program, youíre choosing success.
you and your family a wonderful holiday season and a
happy, healthy New Year.
The information presented on this site is in
intended as medical advice or as a substitute for medical treatment.
This information should be used in conjunction with the guidance and
care of your physician. Consult your physician before beginning this
program as you would any weight-loss or weight-maintenance program.
Those of you on diuretics or diabetes medication should proceed only
under a doctorís supervision as changing your diet usually requires a
change in medication dosages. As with any plan, the weight-loss phases
of this program should not be used by patients on dialysis or by
pregnant or nursing women. As with any weight-loss plan, we recommend
anyone under the age of 18 follow the program under the guidance of