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By Lisa Shaker-Knopp (
I know Halloween is around the corner, and then we roll into Thanksgiving and the Christmas season, but I wanted everyone to start thinking ahead on how to handle these days and come out a winner!  
If you have already been on your journey, the physical cravings should not be an issue at this point, so don’t let those emotional demons and goblins get in your head.  Think and picture how you will feel on Sunday if you stay focused on Saturday and didn’t let those goblins get you.  Also think and picture how you will feel on Sunday if you did go off.  It doesn’t feel real good when you actually visualize and feel it.  
Now, it also doesn’t mean you have to chomp on celery. Get creative with the foods you are allowed to eat. There are some amazing, fun ways to make veggie platters that are very festive and fun!  Make foods that make you feel satisfied. Use flavors, tastes and textures to make you happy.  You can participate in festivities while accomplishing YOUR GOALS!  
I think it’s important to have a positive mindset, no matter what the situation. If I’m going to a party, I want to have a good time and focus on what I can enjoy, not on what I can’t or shouldn’t. When there’s a feast to choose from, I’ll look everything over before I start putting anything on my plate. I always try to zero in on healthy options like salads and protein. If it’s a potluck, I will bring something I enjoy eating that I also know is good for me (and the other people, too). If you get prepared, and you are mindful, you can stay on your plan and still enjoy your party, or events. It’s not as hard as we make it. 
Some thoughts to stay on track:
  1. Eat before you go to a party. 
  2. Bring food and healthy treats to the event. 
  3. Don’t hand out candy this year; give out other items such as stickers, and tattoos. 
  4. For sure, don’t buy candy you love.
  5. Sip on some hot tea, or coffee. 
  6. Chew gum or mints made with Xylitol. 
  7. Drink lots of water. 
  8. If you can’t handle going to a party, do something else like a movie.


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