Those who always think about diets live on a roller coaster of emotions: it feels like Easter was only a few months ago and already there’s an extensive calendar of holidays beginning again that “authorize” people to overindulge at the table. With the holidays fast approaching, many begin to suffer in advance with the idea of chocolate weight gain.
I could list a lot of scientific information to prove that this claim is unwarranted, after all, there are benefits in eating chocolate. It’s rich in antioxidants, is good for the cardiovascular system, contributes to good moods … among other qualities that go beyond the fact that it’s delicious! It’s all a matter of quantity and attitude when it comes to eating.
But today I want to talk about beliefs in the area of food. The most widespread at holiday time is exactly this; chocolate weight gain. The strength of these words have a huge impact on our brain and can mess with our head. Understand why this is:
When you feel like eating chocolate → What comes to mind? → “Chocolate weight gain” → If it’s fattening, it’s forbidden → If it’s forbidden, I shouldn’t eat it → When I deprive myself, I feel like eating it more → When I want it more, I overindulge → When I overindulge, I feel guilty →
A feeling of guilt, like never before.
Do you understand? It’s as simple as that.
Chocolate weight gain: Let’s rethink this concept
The message I want to convey to you today is about all the doubts that are set in our minds on this topic, first of all: stop repeating to yourself that chocolate makes you fat.
It’s not the chocolate that makes you fat, it’s the way you eat it that does. If on occasions when you allow yourself to eat it, you “demolish” the entire bar instead of being satisfied with just one piece, your body actually becomes overwhelmed and can store this excess as fat.
But if you reevaluate this behavior before the holidays come, you won’t have this desperation, or gluttony.
But, what does that mean in practice?
It means that ideally you should be able to eat a small portion of chocolate whenever you feel like it, because this contributes to your dietary balance and to the end of your cycle of overindulgence and guilt.
Willpower to avoid chocolate. For what?
Contrary to common sense, I don’t think we should associate weight loss with willpower. Because it reinforces the idea that only deprivation gives you the so-called “perfect body”.
I prefer to spread a positive message, which is actually the opposite of saying that chocolate makes you fatter. I like the idea of moderation more, to encourage mindful eating.
There are a lot of people who, in the process of getting ready for the holidays, spend a whole month without even smelling chocolate. This is the best way to arrive at the trough thirsty, and then overindulge, after all, you’ve stored that craving for a month!
Then comes that bad feeling, that dread of climbing on the scales the next day. It’s not healthy.
So before the holiday even arrives, try doing this exercise. If you like chocolate a lot, try to eat a little bit after lunch each day, for example. But savor it, feel the pleasure of the moment. Without being “restrained” by the thought of chocolate weight gain. You’ll gradually see a decrease in your anxiety to want to eat chocolate in great quantities.
Focus on your children: don’t over do it, but be mindful
I would like to finish this text by asking for special attention from those who have children, or live with children. If that relates to you, know that you have a huge opportunity. You can help these little human beings build healthy relationships with sweets and food in general.
This begins in the supermarket: do you really need to buy 5 different chocolate Santas for your child? Does it need to be the biggest, with the most fillings, or the heaviest?
It’s also worth discussing this with other family members. Talk about how much chocolate each child will receive, and about the size of them. There are children who receive Christmas chocolate from their grandmother, uncles, friends, parents, school… at the end of the holiday they’ve received 10 different types of chocolate. They don’t need all of that. Create an environment with less excesses available
Here is also a special message for parents of overweight children: they also have the right to eat chocolate, even though they are overweight. Let them choose what they like best, don’t worry about the percentage of cocoa, fat, or only buying light versions at this time.
By having the opportunity to satiate their desire by eating what they really want, the child will become less anxious and this will lessen their hunger and their urge to overeat or hide food.
To conclude, a tip that applies to children and adults: let yourself overindulge, it’s human. Provided you don’t always overindulge, your body will know to recover nicely from a holiday in which chocolate was the main star. Believe!
Now that we’ve clarified the issue of chocolate weight gain, how about checking out some other articles we’ve prepared for you?
How about learning my Sophie Effect method, which teaches you to transform your relationship with food and to listen to your body’s signals again? It includes six weeks of videos and materials that will explain eating habits, and how you can regain the pleasure of eating. Check it out!