1. Prepare simple organic vegetarian dishes - Not only will you reduce your carbon footprint by avoiding cooked meats but you will amaze family and friends with the delicious tastes of organic food. Although slightly more expensive, organic food is much healthier for you, and the planet, tastes better, and is easier to digest so you won't feel so tired after eating. The internet provides an infinite amount of vegetarian holiday recipes so just surf away and you'll find just what your are looking for...guaranteed.
2. Use fresh herbs - Fresh herbs are a way to spice up your favorite recipes...especially if you can purchase them from a local Farmer's Market or natural grocery store. Try substituting fresh herbs for dried herbs and taste a world of difference even in the most classic recipes. Just remember, one teaspoon of dried herbs equals one tablespoon of fresh herbs.
3. Sacred Cooking & Preparation - Often in our modern society we are so busy that when a holiday party potluck comes up we either buy it at the store on our way there or quickly throw something together at the house beforehand. Remember, everything has and absorbs energy. This year why not honor the process and the people at the party by taking your time making the dish with love, remembrance and gratitude. Isn't that why mom's cooking always tastes the best, even when she may not be an award-winning chef?
4. Lighten the Load - For whatever reason during the holidays, we tend to load our plate with heaps of food or even go back for seconds and thirds. Remember, your stomach is the size of your two hands held together in a cupped position. Some say that your stomach is the size around one of your fists. Although there are slight variance in the exact size of your stomach, be sure to stop eating before you feel full...and take much smaller portions. A taste of everything is better by "heaps" and bounds. smile
5. Chew Your Food - Digestion begins in the mouth, not only with saliva excretion but also with chewing your food. According to Macrobiotic eating principles you should chew your food until it is liquid-like in its texture. This aids the digestion process, causes you to slow down and helps you remain aware when you are feeling full. Food also tastes better when there is more focus and concentration on the process and act of eating. After all, it is a sacred act and "we are what we eat."
6. Take Fork Breaks - Throughout your meal, take time to place your fork on your plate and take a few deep breaths. Engage in conversation or take a sip of room temperature water and when you feel ready pick the fork back up to resume eating. This allows time for the stomach to begin digestion and for you to enjoy the meal, and the people, you are sharing it with.
7. Walk it Off - After you have delighted in a beautiful holiday meal and taken time to rest, it is a good idea to put your body into action. Encourage others to join you and go for a nice, slow stroll outside. The walk, and proper breathing, are great to aid digestion, just in case you over did it.
Enjoy your holidays and remember to be present, positive and guilt-free. May Grace bless you and yours during this sacred time of year.