How To Avoid Unhealthy Peer Pressure At a Group Dinner Table

Ayurvedic Thanksgiving Survival Guide

Eat your greens even during the holidays! I love my cleansing liver-friendly dandelions!

With Thanksgiving coming, many of us, healthful mindful wellness folks, are going to spend time with family and friends. Often our friends and family might be less healthy in their routines and especially food. Once you know how feeling healthy, light, and easy in your body feels, it is not easy to go back to feeling heavy, sluggish, and bloated.

These family dinner cause a lot of stress and anxiety in many health warriors who are striving their best to protect their health and digestion on a day to day period.

Many of my clients said that they feel tension building in their body when they imagine sitting at a family table and having to explain why they refuse gravy or take just one cookie instead of loading the plate along with everyone else.

Some of us might also feel fear because we are not sure of our ability to resist temptation and say ‘no’. We are afraid of gaining weight that we worked so hard to get rid off. The universe works in a way that whatever you focus on tends to happens. So if you focus on things that you are afraid of or things that you are not looking towards to, they will come into your life.

If your body fills up with resistance and you get an influx of negative emotions thinking about an upcoming food coma, I have a few useful tips for you. First, remember that whatever happened in the past doesn’t have to happen this year. You build your life a day at time. You are in full control when it comes to the outcome of a family dinner. You can even shift the way everyone feels if you choose to 😉

Second, go through the list below and choose 3-4 tips from the list and stick to them throughout the whole weekend. Choose the ones that will be the easiest to do for you so they don’t cause any additional stress. Don’t try to do all of them if they are not a part of your day to day habits, you will get overwhelmed. Not the feeling we are after! The goal is to feel refreshed and happy with your body throughout the entire weekend and on Monday morning.

Ayurvedic Thanksgiving Survival Guide

  1. First thing in the morning visualize how you want to feel and behave around food. I imagine myself feeling nourished, relaxed, and grateful in front of the table.
  2. Remember what Thanksgiving is all about – giving THANKS! It is a great time to do a “Gratitude Check Up.” Take at least 10 MINUTES of this long weekend to sit down with a pen and paper and write down everything you are grateful for in your life. Maybe do it with the entire family.
  3. The earlier you eat, the better you are going to feel. Your body is more awake and your metabolism is higher at noon than it is at 7pm. Usually if we eat late in the evening, we are more likely to spend the rest of the night in front of the TV. If you eat earlier in the day, you’ll have more time to go for a walk and play outside while burning off some of the previously eaten meal.
  4. Get your heart rate up before sitting down to eat. Throw your niece or your brother up a few times (they’ll love it), do 50 jumping jacks and squats before the meal. Ayurvedically speaking, it will enkindle your digestive fire and prepare your body to digest a meal. Tim Ferris of 4 HOUR Body swears by this technique.
  5. Sip hot water with lemon and ginger all day. Add steeped fennel seeds if you feel bloated. It will keep your digestion active and will keep your body detoxifying.
  6. Go for a walk after dinner. Fall is one of the most beautiful seasons. Enjoy the colors, breathe fresh air and get you D vitamins to keep your mood up! Moving after a meal helps to avoid this nasty sluggish feeling.
  7. Be an inspiring role model. Don’t lecture or look down upon anyone not following your rules. The only way to create change is by inspiring people to experiment and explore new ways, it is never done through force.
  8. Take 5 mins 3 times a day to be by yourself with yourself to get back to you, to feel your body, to get more intune with what you need. This is the most important thing! If you are in your body and listening to it, it won’t mislead you. Find a quiet room or a corner and close your eyes. Take 10 slow breaths mentally saying SO on the inhale and HUM on the exhale. You can do it while walking outside, too. Feel your body, paying attention to all the sensations and feelings. Pay attention to your stomach, to hunger level, to your emotions. Let every breath nourish you so you are less hungry physically. Smile. Be grateful for the breath, for the body, for a table with food. And say to yourself that you love your body, trust it, listen to it, learn from it, and nourish it.
  9. Sprinkle sweets and cake with cinnamon
  10. Make 1/2 plate veggies
  11. Enjoy the connection with other people not just the food. Make social events about being social. When you are absorbed in an exciting conversation, it will be a lot easier to ignore the greasy food
  12. Having 3 square meals is better than grazing all day. If you are to do anything, do this. Give your digestion enough time to digest food. Don’t load it continuously in hope that it will all digest in its time. It won’t! Instead it will turn into a fermenting rotting bubbly soup that will make you tired, bloated, and plain not happy with the way you feel. This weekend if you know there will be a lot of food, choose not to snack so you digestion is ready to digest a big meal.
  13. Wait at least an hour or two before eating dessert. Sugar is faster to digest and dropping it on top of turkey, beans, and potatoes is going to create some disagreement inside. Sugar wil have to wait for other stuff to be digested before it gets its turn. A result? Lots of bubbling, fermenting, gas, and fatigue.
  14. Dance! Do you know what happens at the huge Russian dinners (they are way bigger than the ones in the US)? We dance in between. We eat some, dance some, eat some, dance some. It usually turns into a super long party but it rarely leaves you feeling heavy the next day.
  15. Don’t drink pop or juice with your meal. Stick to water or tea.
  16. Bring a healthy veggie-based meal. Choose one of the below amazing recipes or create your own. I bet this healthy holiday alternatives will make your mouth water!

In the comments please let me know what 3 tips you are going to follow this weekend. This way you will feel more focused and in a way accountable 🙂

Have fun and be grateful for your amazing body!



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