Tips for the Holidays

The holiday season can be a challenging time for recovery. The key is to minimize stress, anxiety, and fear associated with social events, holiday meals, gatherings, idle time, and parties. This can be done by preparing for the events, planning ahead, knowing details, and establishing support from family, friends, and professional treatment team. This will help guide individuals through taxing times to a successful lasting recovery.
Tips for the holiday for those going through recovery:
  • Focus on celebrating and spending time with loved ones rather than counting calories and on food.
  • Avoid labeling any food “good” or “bad” unless the food is molding or dirty
  • Plan ahead, prevent “overbooking”, and get a planner to write down a detailed schedule. Be mindful of your stress levels.
  • Maintain good communication with treatment team. Work with dietitian for a balanced meal plan ahead of time. Support group members are important in keeping connected with individuals for an effective recovery.
  • Allow yourself to take a break when events become hectic or overwhelming
  • Contact host of party prior to event to know what will be served. Bring along “safe foods,” if necessary.
  • Sustain 3 meals per day routine with 1-2 snacks, try to avoid skipping meals or going to holiday functions hungry in anticipation for a large meal.
  • Hang out with people who have a healthy attitude towards, weight, body image, and food. Bring these trusted people with you to parties, if allowed.
  • Have friend, family, and support group members stay involved with your goals, trials and triumphs.
  • If you feel comfortable, share some of your challenges, what would be helpful, and some other information about your eating disorder with friends and family. They will be able to support you during this difficult time.
Blog was adapted from eating recovery center article in Denver, Colorado.
By: Brahmlin Sethi, RD