Sunday, December 14, 2008

For Goodness Sake, Enjoy Those Christmas Cookies!

One of our favorite pastimes in December is the making and eating of cookies. We have been making batches of cookies daily this week, a different type each day; and I keep meaning to make some dishes for the neighbors. After dinner the entire plate disappears like magic. “Oh well,” I say, “I guess we’ll have to make more tomorrow!”

I went food shopping this afternoon and became very angry when I saw the headlines on almost every one of the women’s magazines featured at the checkout line. “Lose 10 pounds by Christmas, Is Stress Making You Fat?, New Miracle Fat-Burning Food, Eat More and Lose Weight, What Happened to Oprah?”

It seems very strange that these titles would be so heavily featured between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the time that most adults tend to gain a few pounds. Women are stressed out, trying to prepare a nice Christmas for their families. This stress is increasing their cortisol levels, which causes them to gain weight. It is making them tired, which causes them to gain weight. Then they see these titles, which increases their guilt at eating delicious food, which increases their stress while eating, which causes them to gain weight.

Dieting right now can actually be dangerous. Cut out the carbohydrates that your brain needs and you will suffer headaches; the hormones needed to keep your mood stabilized will be short-changed, making you irritable or depressed. Resetting your metabolism to using less calories now will cause you to retain the calories when you do let yourself eat at a party.

Most of the editors of these magazines are women, and I am quite surprised that they can purposely do this to other women. I don’t know how they can sleep at night.

Advent is supposed to be a time of feasting and joy. We are supposed to sit by a fire, or on the couch under blankets, enjoying the warmth and the plenty of our tables. Our bodies are made to naturally conserve a little fat over the winter, to keep us warm. I say, enjoy those Christmas cookies, and forget about your weight until New Year’s.

“Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
Psalms 103:5

Today we light the pink candle for the third week of Advent.

1 comment:

Loren Christie said...

I agree, and I also feel that stress at times. This is a nice article, in the style of Good Housekeeping. Wish I could see it in place of some of those more stressful headlines! I have some special cookie recipes that I'll but on the blog for you next week.