Holiday Overeating, An American Tradition · 27 November 2010

Overeating seems to be an American tradition. Especially, during the holidays. I have been trying to stay healthy and break this tradition and did a pretty good job at Thanksgiving dinner. Then we had dessert.

Part of my holiday overeating problem is that overeating has been a daily tradition. As a matter of fact, I have a reputation to uphold as a Human Garbage Disposal. At public displays of eating, like potlucks and family gatherings, I heap my plate with all the goodies. I want to try everything. There is never any spot on my plate that shows through the food. And I pile it as high as I can. When people say that I do not need to take so much because there will surely be seconds, I just reply that I will be ready for seconds shortly. And then I gobble down my food and head back for seconds. Or at least I used to.

These days I have been trying to break my daily tradition of overeating. So I try to take smaller first helpings and maybe not even have seconds. I did pretty well at Thanksgiving not having many hors d’oeuvres and having only a moderate single helping. I love turkey and gravy and stuffing, but did not overindulge myself with them. The nice thing about that was not feeling like I had to be rolled around the house afterward, and I did not need to say the old Alka-Seltzer line, “I can’t believe I ate the whole thing.” But then we had dessert.

While I might have been able to have a moderate amount of self-control when it came to dinner, I did not do so well with dessert. Thankfully, we waited about an hour or so to have dessert with the neighbors. We had a couple pies and some brownies. The brownies were cut into tiny bite-size squares so I did not feel like I ate that much. (I am not sure how many I ate, but I am sure it was less than a dozen.) But I love pie.

I like desserts of all kinds, but I love pie. Banana Cream is my favorite with Pecan Pie a very close second. I do not have birthday cake, I have birthday pie. When I was a kid, I had angel food cake for my birthday only because nobody had birthday pie. Truth be told though, I really love what all of these desserts have in common – cream. I love ice cream and whipped cream and the desserts that go with them. So when we had our Thanksgiving dessert, I had a little pumpkin pie with my whipped cream. I had my first piece, then we had some Wii Just Dance sessions before I had a half piece and then later two more half pieces. The dance sessions probably in between kept me from eating the whole thing.

When all was said and done this Thanksgiving, I did a fair job of having self-control. I did not worry about my reputation as a Human Garbage Disposal nor did I try to keep up the American tradition of holiday overeating. At least until we had dessert. Maybe in the future I can skip out on the holiday overeating by just giving up desserts. I can probably do it. But if the desserts go with whipped cream, I will probably need to stick with tradition.

© 2010 Michael T. Miyoshi

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