Living a healthy lifestyle during the holidays should honestly count as an Olympic sport. For many people, Thanksgiving is the beginning of the end, diet-wise. You feel like there’s basically no hope after you’ve eaten an entire bird, your body weight in stuffing, and pumpkin pie is seeping out of your pores. That’s why we had nutrition expert Max Lugavere on our Diet Starts Tomorrow podcast to give us some tips on getting through the holidays without wreaking havoc on your body. Here are some of our highlights from our chat with Lugavere, but to get all his advice, listen to our podcast linked below.
- How our food has become less nutritious overtime
- You’re more likely to be hangry and overeat when you chose to eat processed foods
- The optimal amount of protein to consume is probably double the recommended amount
- You can burn calories by eating protein
- Why rats in New York City are becoming type two diabetic
- Why Lugavere does not believe in the “five small meals a day” method
- Lugavere lives by the motto that “Your next meal is another opportunity to turn it all around.” So yeah, diet really does start tomorrow if you want it to
- How to stretch your stomach to fit more food on Thanksgiving
- Remind yourself as Lugavere does, it’s about progress, not perfection
Images: Yakynina Anastasia / Unsplash
The time has come. You bid all your friends a tearful goodbye because you cannot imagine being without them for seven hours, let alone seven days. You take a crappy flight/train/car ride back home, glaring at any strangers who attempt to make conversation. Look, random 30-year-old dude, it’s great that you love Stanford, but I really just want to sleep. I’m not in the mood to talk to you about how your start-up just received angel investors and is going to revolutionize the cryptocurrency industry or whatever. Stop hitting on me or networking with me or whatever the f*ck you’re trying to do.
If you live in a dorm, arriving home means you get to enjoy your first home-cooked meal in weeks. If you live in an apartment, probably the same because of ~Postmates~. Your mom is probably already yelling at you for not helping out with the dishes (like why do I have chores again?). That’s when your high school group chat starts blowing up with “Oh my god we haven’t seen each other in forever” texts.
All you want to do is watch Netflix and sleep until Thanksgiving comes. However. There’s a plot twist. Somehow, you’ve been coerced into going out. It’s the night before Thanksgiving, the most popular time to see everyone from high school that you were hoping to never see again. (Unless you’re one of those people that goes to college with half of your high school and never makes any new friends, *cough cough* half of my high school.)
You tell your parents you’re going out, and they:
a) Get annoyed because you’re missing out on family time. How could you not want to listen to your dad and grandfather argue about politics? What about a nice game of family Monopoly? Listen, mom, it’s not my fault my friends are forcing me to go out. TBH I would much rather be taking a bath right now and watching Friends for the 400th time, but you can’t have it all
b) Try to institute a curfew, which is weird because you’re used to staying up until 7am without anyone caring. Who the hell is home by midnight anymore? Parties don’t even get fun until 11:30. Time to remind your parents that you’re a legal adult and therefore don’t have to listen to anything they tell you. You then get a whole speech about how they still pay for everything. Therefore you def do have some obligation to listen to them.
c) Remind you to stay safe. Yes, mom, haven’t done this a hundred billion times by now.
After sifting through all your clothes (because you left everything cute at school), you find a decent crop top and your biggest jacket because HOLY SH*T it is freezing outside. You go and meet up at your one friend’s house that is not currently flooded with their entire extended family.
You see all your old friends from high school, which involves lots of hugging and screaming and rapid stories about a bunch of people you don’t know so that you, and everyone else, is clear that their life is amazing. Cue pretending to care about knowing the social hierarchy of all the sororities at your school. Totally not checking Instagram and ignoring you right now.
Now the vodka is starting to hit. This is gonna be a weird f*cking night. You and your friends take a billion photos, which you post to your story mostly because you want people back at college to think you’re actually having fun over the holidays. High school 5ever!
Depending on if you live in a boring town that literally doesn’t have any bars for people under 40 or in an actually exciting city, you head to a house party or a club and prepare yourself to see everyone.
If your high school was anything like mine, all the girls were absurdly tanned, aggressively highlighted, and a ripe five pounds. The boys will inevitably be dressed in high school apparel because you should rep high school forever, obviously. Best time of your life? Right?
Suddenly, EVERYONE is there. Like, why did Alice go that blond, it looks so fake? And Jesus, Nick already has a beer gut…so much for being the star athlete in high school. Every other conversation is “Omigod so good to see you we should get lunch sometime!” Haha, bitch never talking to you again. Time for more photos!
A decent song comes on and you all start dancing. You see a guy from your high school you once were, like, in love with. Then you wonder why because you’d legit never go for him now. Ew, did you even have standards when you were 16? Seriously, who the f*ck were you?
It’s 12am and you find yourself remembering that curfew your mom gave you. You hate following rules, but honestly, everyone is so lame anyway. You accomplished your goal of seeing the two people you still care about from high school.
You hug and lie to everyone that you’ll make plans and hang out soon. Then, you hop in your Uber back home to dream about Thanksgiving. Soon, you will be eating five flavors of pie, sweet potato casserole, and stuffing. You’ll be very happy you’re not wearing a crop top too. By the time you get bored of eating Thanksgiving leftovers (is that even possible though?) you’ll be heading back to your normal life. This weird trip down memory lane will have just been a dream… until winter break when you come home and do it all again.
Images: Giphy (3); Matan Segev/Pexels
Feeling horrified, embarrassed, insulted, and generally offended are part and parcel as we trudge into the holiday season. When you stick a bunch of weirdo relatives that haven’t seen each other in a year in a small house rife with alcohol and tryptophan, it’s a recipe for frightening questions, conversations, and interactions. Whether it be your Aunt Linda constantly suggesting you’re going to die alone, or Grandpa Ralph’s troubling views on it’s important to find ways to steer the conversation back into territory you feel comfortable eating copious amounts of turkey in. So once you’ve hit Uncle Billy with an “actually memes aren’t legitimate news sources and what you just said was racist,” it’s time to deescalate and allow him the time to process the roasting he just endured. Knowing what to say to your relatives that both shuts down their bullsh*t and enables you to change the subject is a delicate art, and we’re here to help you perfect it. Here are some ways to save yourself from holiday hell no matter what your relatives might throw at you.
They Bring Up Your Ex
They Say: “Are you still dating Bill/Bob/Kyle/Chad? We liked him. You should get married.”
You Say: “Did you know that the average life expectancy of a woman goes up by 90% per dog she adopts? This is Rufus. *shows phone* He just graduated training school and he made a lot of new friends at the dog park. He also volunteers at the old folks’ home! Speaking of which, I saw they have an opening if you’re interested! I can definitely talk to them—I think they have a ground unit available with or without the emergency push button on each wall.”
Steer as far away as possible and get out of the subject! But feel free to get a jab or two in there since, f*ck that, Chad was a douche.
They Bring Up Politics
They Say: “Trump doubled jobs and is the best president we’ve ever had! The liberal cry babies are just mad they lost.”
You Say: “You know what else is the best? Thanks to President Trump and his policies, I just took up Canadian residency and I’ve become a lover of poutine. There are so many ways to prepare poutine. My personal fav is classic with brown gravy and cheese curds. What are your favorite poutines? Do you like classic or do you get wild with it? Canada has such a fascinating culture.”
YIKES. This is bound to happen, and it f*cking sucks because, especially if the convo veers into the “racism” territory, we all have to be ready to push back at f*cked up things our relatives say. And really, they’re the ones who created this awkward situation by being racist when they could have just been quiet, so no need to feel bad about putting them in their place. Try responding calmly and clearly about why what they just said is wrong, and before they can hit you with some “facts” they learned in the comment section of YouTube, excuse yourself to “use the ladies room” aka “hit your vape pen in the hall closet.”
They Say: “I noticed you’re not wearing the purity ring I got you for your 13th birthday. Have you been going to church?”
You Say: “That reminds me of a hilarious meme I saw” *shows 100 memes so that no other terrible convos can start* “Did you catch this week’s episode of 90 Day Fiancé? It really got me thinking about the passport process and how it’d be great if we could submit our own pictures, amirite?”
Oh boy. Avoiding your more religious family members’ comments about your own devotion is like, an Olympic level Thanksgiving sport. Your 90-year-old Grandma Jesus Freak is not going to understand that for you, religion is less about “going to church on Sunday,” and more about “having visions during hot yoga.” Best to just distract your relative with memes and reality television and GTFO.
When Are You Having Kids?
They Say: “Dogs aren’t children. Your eggs are dying. Time to breed!”
You Say: “I really love not having to fork over my hard-earned money into a savings account so that a kid can waste it in college or finding themselves while abroad! On the other hand, if you’d like me to have children, I JUST opened a KickStarter you can donate to! Here’s the link.”
Talk about dogs and kitties. This is your business—no one else’s. You can shut it down quickly with a “that’s kind of private” and embarrass whoever’s asking the personal questions, or you can keep it light and ask for money for said future kid’s college fund.
They Have An Issue With One Or All Of The Letters In LGBTQA
They Say: “It’s TERRIBLE. The gays have taken over television and are pushing their agenda!”
You Say: “I have a gay hairdresser and he could work WONDERS with your complexion, Aunt Diane. Did you also know that there’s a same-sex penguin couple at the zoo that is raising a baby chick? Here are some pictures. Aren’t they cute? That reminds me—I hear Antarctica is GORGEOUS this time of year. You should go! I think you’d have a GREAT time.”
Yo, f*ck them. It’s 2018. Tell them to get with the program. Passive-aggressive (and straight-up aggressive) jabs are allowed. Lock eyes with your Great Aunt Homophobe and describe to her, in detail, the time in college you hooked up with a woman, keep describing it until she finally backs down and hits you with a “let’s not get into this—there’s turkey to be eaten.” And again, the same goes for racism, sexism, or any other -ism that might pop up this holiday season.
They Say: “What are you doing at your job these days? You should have been a doctor or lawyer. What in the world are you going to do with a communications/art/history degree?”
You Say: “In my day-to-day, I spend most of my time trying to figure out how to communicate in memes and gifs. Do you know what those are? Have you seen the moth/light memes? Personally, I feel they went a little off the deep end, ya know? You know what I do love, though—the new publishing tools on Facebook. They’re really easy to navigate. Whaddya you think of them? I didn’t think I’d ever get over the new algorithms in place, but I’m starting to appreciate them, ya know?”
It’s your business. And, honestly, you probably have a 9-to-5 or a side hustle or are living at mom and dad’s. Whatever—you do you.
Images: Priscilla Du Preez/Unsplash; Giphy (6)