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Users On Reddit Enduring anorexia During The Holidays

*Trigger Warning: The accounts and pieces of advice in this piece are related to eating disorders and might be upsetting for those struggling or in recovery.*

Just about everyone knows that the holidays often bring an increase in food consumption. With that can come quite a bit of anxiety. After all, just around the corner comes the new year which brings diet and weight shaming season. Advertisers make us feel as if we have to rectify the “wrong” food choices we made at the end of the previous year. This undoubtedly can poorly affect the way we see ourselves at a time when we should feel excited about the new year. In some cases, this can be particularly hard for those who are or have previously suffered from anorexia, bulimia, binge-eating disorder, or more generalized disordered eating.

Users on Reddit who’ve endured eating disorders are sharing tips and stories about getting through the holidays.

Check out some of the tips below!

  1. Think about what holiday-specific triggers you might run into so you can put some coping mechanisms in place.
  2. Make a plan ahead of time with your therapist, physician, nutritionist, or whoever else makes up your support team.
  3. If you are worried about there being “safe” foods available, offer to bring a side dish you feel comfortable eating.
  4. Let go of the notion that the holidays mean you should be happy.
  5. Tell your family what comments and phrases make you uncomfortable.
  6. Do all your favorite self-care activities in the days leading up to the food-centric holiday.
  7. Come up with secret signals with people who support you in your recovery to alert them when you need some time or are triggered.
  8. Make sure to eat breakfast and lunch as you normally would before a holiday dinner.
  9. If people start making annoying comments about what you’re eating, just smile and don’t reply.
  10. Text someone who knows what you’re going through so you can support each other.
  11. Throwback to the non-food-related holiday activities you enjoyed as a kid.
  12. Plan reasons to leave the room ahead of time so you have an excuse when you need a breather.
  13. Pick a seat at the table where it’s easier to exit without drawing attention to yourself, just in case.
  14. Focus on nostalgic foods that remind you of happy memories.
  15. Wait until the people who comment about your eating are gone to enjoy your favorite parts of the meal.
  16. Find a way to give back or support others.
  17. Journal your thoughts and feelings before the meal.
  18. Ask someone to keep you accountable in whatever way you need.
  19. Concentrate on socializing and enjoying the company of others.
  20. Forgive yourself if the day is hard for you and doesn’t go the way you want it to.
  21. And finally, don’t push yourself — if you feel like you can’t be around certain people or food in order to stay in recovery, then don’t.” –u/autobuzzfeedbot

Bring your own food.

Most likely at least few people will be contributing dishes on the day – make and bring something along you absolutely know is safe and you can eat if everything else is too scary.

Our safe foods are all different but a few ideas would be:

  • Platters. Fruit, cut up veggies, crackers, cheese, hummus, dips, anti pesto, meats, whatever you’re comfortable with. Easy to chip away at and sustain your energy throughout the day without feeling like it’s too overwhelming.
  • Salads. You can have a big plate full of salad and no one will bat an eye. Lots of veggies, but you can also add things like strawberries, boiled eggs, beetroot, dressings, nuts, cheese, croutons, meats/faux meats, tomatoes, pomegranate, onions, etc (probably not all together but some interesting combos are really good)
  • Veggie bakes. I’ve made huge veggie lasagnas that were incredibly delicious and seemed super normal. You can use things like low fat cheese or vegan cheese alternatives or even cashews/potatoes blended up with nooch to make a cheesy sauce to bake a bunch of veggies in. Add in tomato sauce and pasta/pasta sheets (I use GF ones) (or layers of starchy veg like potato and pumpkin) and you’ve got yourself a pasta bake/lasagna without oil, cheese, gluten or meat. Of course it’s not the same as the real thing but with a lot of strategic herbs and garlic, almost as good!
  • Desserts! I’ve made so many nice and ‘safe’ raw vegan brownies/cakes/etc, but also things like meringues (egg whites + sugar/sugar alternatives), healthy cookies and cakes, parfaits, apple crumble and sugar free soy-custard, the possibilities are endless!! Just make sure you try it before offering it to your family, because some recipes really don’t work.

Wear something nice but also comfy

Everyone eats more than they usually would on days like this. One day will not significantly affect your body or weight. One day of overeating and not compensating will NOT make you gain pounds and pounds of fat.

So wear something forgiving. Wear something you feel confident in and also has room to move in. Skinny jeans, bodycon anything, tight waistbands – all no nos.

I’m in the Southern Hemisphere so it’ll be warm on Christmas Day. I’m wearing a beautiful flowy dress that covers my legs and belly and makes me feel great.

Previous years I’ve worn: T-Shirt dresses, Maxi dresses, rompers/play suits, knitted stretchy high waisted pants and a boob tube, flowy high waisted pants and a matching crop top, stretchy high waisted skirt and a light knit baggy sweater.

If it’s winter where you are: Perfect! Rug up and get cosy in clothes you love. Or wear a big ugly sweater and look cute as hell doing it.

When people offer you food you don’t want

Smile and politely say “No Thank You.” And return to conversation. You don’t need to justify why, just leave it at no.

If you receive food presents

Don’t freak out, you don’t need to eat it in front of them to show your gratitude. If you think it will trigger a binge and/or purge, you can later re-gift it to someone else over the next couple of days, or give it to another family member the next day. But I strongly recommend allowing yourself to enjoy it in moderation. One year I got a box of 30 beautiful artisan dark chocolates. I had one every second or third day until March the next year. It was lovely to have a gift for that long and to always have something to look forward to in a day or two. I liked it so much that dark chocolate is something I’ll still treat myself to every other week and I’m able to do so with moderation and genuine pleasure.

If people comment on your weight/looks/what you’re eating or if someone gives you the “you look so healthy/good and your brain twists it negatively

1st option: if it’s malicious/negative – ignore that person and move to someone you like. Don’t give them power over you.

1st option part 2: shut them down with full force (there’s always at least some drama on family get-togethers)

2nd option: for well-meaning comments – this one is up to you. Remind yourself that most people do not get eating disorders and meant whatever they said from a place of love, encouragement and caring. They love you and honestly just want to see you live your life fully. They don’t want you to suffer.

Looking healthy is a compliment. You’re glowing, you’re radiant, you’re bright and alert, you’re warm and affectionate, you look beautiful. You look beautiful for more than what a camera can capture. Our eyes see so much more than the physical.

General Hecticness

A lot of us thrive in routine, habit, structure. This disturbed can be extremely scary and stressful.

  • You can give yourself structure to the day by writing out what’s going to happen, roughly. Things like:

{wake up 8am, shower, wear x and x, finish wrapping presents, 10am drive to Mums. 11am-4pm Lunch at Mum’s. 4pm-5pm Drive to Dads. 5pm-9pm Dinner with Dad and family. 9pm Drive home. 10pm cuddle with [pet/partner] and organise my gifts.}

  • Give yourself time outs whenever you need them. Go to the bathroom or sit outside for a few minutes and re-group. I carry essential oils to smell whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed, find what works for you.
  • Hang around your favourite person. Could be your same-age cousin or your quite old grandpa. Could be your dad or mum or bf/gf or your aunts cat. Your little niece. Whoever you need it to be.

I know some of these won’t apply/won’t help some people because we all do different things and have different familiars but I hope it helps someone, or just prompts someone to have a think about how to prepare themselves for the day and hopefully a bit of harm reduction too.” –u/traumabroccoli

“This year I had managed to break out of the binge restrict cycle and stop binge eating. I had lost all the weight I had gained and have been eating out and exercising consistently.

The holidays are absolutely triggering me. I keep eating “junk” food and eating too much and all the guilt has started to come back. I’m scared I’ll gain all the weight back and I still feel just as big as before and have the strongest desire to lose weight but I keep eating too much.

I know I can’t be too strict on myself as that triggers binges, but this feels so hard. I feel so big and ugh I’m obsessed with eating and the only thing that makes me feel better is if I exercise. I’m going to try to stick to my 3 meals a day and snacking when hungry no matter how huge my desire to restrict is. I’m so scared of weight gain but not as scared as I am about falling back into binge eating.

Wish I could make a meal and exercise plan and fast forward my life for 3 months and just wake up feeling thin and not have to deal with over eating or any thoughts about it. I’m not even a “fat” weight, it just feels and looks “fat” on me. One part of me feels like if I lose weight and gain muscle and hit a certain number I’ll feel satisfied but another part of me is scared I’ll never be happy.”- u/narkreturn

“I would really suggest looking into intuitive eating. It sounds counterintuitive, but the more guilty you feel for bingeing, the more likely it is to keep happening. You basically have to accept however your body wants to eat for it to even out.” –momunist

“You’re not alone. I struggle with my eating less now, but I still struggle. And I’ve been in support groups, and heard recordings of support groups, where people talk about doing everything under the sun with food. I know from experience how terrible it feels to lose control, but really, no matter what you do or have done, someone else has been there too. I don’t know if this will help but thought it could.

People have so many reasons for bingeing, and so few, in a way. For me it is like a drug, but I don’t think it’s that way for everyone. The other posts have covered some likely reasons. I think it’s usually the best solution the person believes they have to whatever challenge they are facing at the time. It may feel ungraceful or illogical, but it’s completely human.”-Coeurahge

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A Mexican Artist Is Making Pancake Art That’s Too Beautiful To Eat

Culture

A Mexican Artist Is Making Pancake Art That’s Too Beautiful To Eat

nappancakes / TikTok

Social media is where people can show off just about anything they create. This includes art in any and all media, like pancake art. Claudia, the creator behind Nappan Pancake art, is the latest artist watching their art reach the masses.

Claudia, the artist behind Nappan Pancake art, got her start because of the pandemic.

The artist first started to play around with pancake art last spring break when the pandemic forced businesses and schools to close. Claudia wanted to get more creative with her kids’ breakfasts since they were now always at home.

“I started experimenting with making Pancake art,” Claudia recalls to mitú. “At first I only used the color of the natural dough and a little cocoa. At first, I just used the ketchup dispensers and little by little I learned.”

Claudia uses her pancake art to honor some truly iconic people.

@nappancakes

Responder a @detodoun_poco233 Cepillín ✨🥞✨ en nuestros ♥️ #parati #fy #HijosAdopTiktoks #adoptiktoks #viral #foryou @cepillintv #pancakeart ncakeart

♬ La Feria de Cepillin – Cepillín

Cepillín recently died and the loss was felt throughout the community. He made our lives joyous and fun with his music, especially his birthday song. Some of the creations are done for fans who request to see their faves turned into delicious pancake art.

The artist loves creating the edible works of art.

The journey of becoming a pancake artist has been a fun adventure for Claudia and her children. The more she has practiced, the more she has been able to do.

“Sometimes I scream with excitement and I go to all the members of my house to see it,” Claudia says about her successes. “Other times it’s just a feeling like “disappointment could be better” other times it just breaks or burns and then I just cry but it usually feels very satisfying.”

You can check out all of her creations on TikTok.

@nappancakes

Responder a @reyna100804santoyo siii🥞✨ díganle que me adopte 🥺 @ederbez #adoptiktoks #hijosadoptiktoks #parati #foryou #viral #fy #art #pancakeart

♬ Little Bitty Pretty One – Thurston Harris

With 350,000 followers and growing, it won’t be long until more people start to fully enjoy Claudia’s art. Her children can’t get enough of it and she is so excited to share it with the rest of the world.

READ: Spicy Food Lovers Have Reason To Celebrate As New Study Says Eating Chilies Could Be Secret To Longevity

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Here’s What You Should Know About Getting Your Covid Vaccine

Entertainment

Here’s What You Should Know About Getting Your Covid Vaccine

FREDERIC J. BROWN / AFP via Getty Images

The world has almost turned the page on the Covid pandemic that has upended our lives for the last year. Vaccine strategies across the nation are helping to end the pandemic, but we are not out of the woods yet. Here are some things you and your family should know about getting your vaccination.

The vaccines are safe and effective.

In the U.S., there are three main vaccines that people are getting: Moderna, Pfizer, and Johnson & Johnson. All three have been proven to be safe and effective. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 109 million doses of the vaccines have been administered to people in the U.S. Millions of Americans have lined up and gotten vaccinated with a very small number experiencing the rare serious side effects.

The common side effects from the Covid vaccine are pain or swelling at the injection site, headache and chills, or a fever. These side effects disappear on their own quickly. After your vaccine, according to the CDC, you can expect to be asked to wait 15-30 minutes to make sure you don’t have an allergic reaction to the vaccine. Vaccination personnel are equipped with the medication and treatments needed to reverse serious and threatening allergic reactions to the vaccine.

There are currently three vaccines available in the U.S.

Americans can expect to receive either the Pfizer-BioTech, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson / Janssen vaccine. Currently, these three are the vaccines that have been approved for use in the U.S. to end the pandemic. Pfizer-BioTech and Moderna vaccines require two shots taken three weeks and four weeks apart, respectively. Johnson & Johnson is a one-shot vaccine. All have been proven effective in preventing hospitalization from the virus.

There are currently two more vaccines in Phase 3 of their trial that could bring even more relief to the American public. The Oxford-AstraZeneca and Novava vaccines are currently being tested and are showing promising results in the U.S. trials.

Speak with your healthcare provider about medications and the vaccine.

There is still a lot we do not know about the vaccine as we are still learning its full effect. As of now, healthcare providers and experts don’t recommend taking pain relievers (such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen) or antihistamines to avoid vaccination side effects. It is unclear how these medications will impact the efficacy of the vaccine.

The vaccine is not a replacement for wearing masks and practicing social distancing.

It is important to make sure that you follow proper Covid safety guidelines when you get vaccinated. This is for the safety of you, your healthcare provider, and anyone else in the area.

Covid safety guidelines aren’t going away any time soon. Even as you and those you know get vaccinated, it is important that people continue to wear masks when in public and maintain social distancing when possible. While the vaccines are effective in protecting you from getting sick and going to the hospital, doctors are still learning whether or not vaccinated people can spread Covid. This is why fully vaccinated people need to practice social distancing and continue wearing masks to ensure that they keep their communities safe.

However, for people who are fully vaccinated, life is a little freer. According to the CDC, fully vaccinated people can gather with other fully vaccinated people indoors without masks and no social distancing. Fully vaccinated people can even gather with one unvaccinated person from another household who is at a low-risk of severe Covid infection. Lastly, fully vaccinated people do not have to quarantine when they are exposed if asymptomatic.

This is the first set of guidelines released for fully vaccinated people and it is showing that life can start getting back to normal as more people line up to get their shots when they are eligible.

READ: Rite Aid Refused To Give Undocumented Residents The COVID-19 Vaccine Even Though They’re Eligible

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