The Days Of Trick Or Treating Are Over

42308248 – children in fancy costume dress going trick or treating

Halloween was always my favorite holiday, because I could dress up as anything I wanted to be. It was always such a blast to think of what I wanted to be for Halloween, and my mother always obliged, albeit begrudgingly at times when she wasn’t thrilled with my choice or had to put together a costume for me. That being said, there were only two years in which she took on the task of putting a costume together for me: in fifth grade, when I went as Cleopatra, and once in seventh grade when I went as Princess Leia.

Year after year, I used the same hard plastic trick or treat pumpkin which my mother bought me when I was five years old, and I always managed to get that Jack O’ Lantern filled to the brim with candy when I went trick or treating. Back then, parents were concerned about apples containing razorblades, so I was instructed to never accept apples, but I could accept all the candy I wanted, as long as the wrappers were intact. I had my favorites, like Snickers Minis and Dubble Bubble Gum, but I was such a polite kid that I was happy to get any candy when I approached front doors and made that request:

“Trick or Treat!”

The Halloween I celebrated in sixth grade was characterized by trick or treating with several friends in Bel Air, an upscale community in Los Angeles. When we knocked on the doors of the beautiful homes there, we didn’t get Dum Dums or candy corn. Instead, we received things like full sized Hershey bars and little boxes of Godiva chocolates. One house we went to handed out $5 bills, which was a sizeable amount to a ten-year old in 1976!

Things have changed dramatically over the years, with parents opting to take their children to the mall or to scheduled events in lieu of knocking on doors at dusk. I completely understand why, since the hazards of walking around after dark and accepting candy from strangers can be just like playing Russian roulette. In the eleven years that I have lived in the same community, I have only had four groups of children trick or treating. It’s a dying trend.

That Love Thing

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It’s Valentine’s day, which some people would argue is a completely manufactured, and therefore a completely meaningless day. However, if Cupid’s special day was so meaningless, would it sweep up millions of people in a wave of ultimate expressions of love, and inspire elaborate marriage proposals? It certainly seems peculiar that in the vast majority of cases, or at least the ones I have come across, Valentine naysayers are either bitterly single, or partnered up, but have had such a rotten string of Valentine’s Day celebrations that they have given up any hope of having a lovely day with the object of their affections.

It’s pretty obvious how the obnoxious heart motifs and pressure to purchase roses and jewelry (especially a carbon-based bauble for a lady’s left ring finger) have sullied the perception of this day of love. The fine dining industry is probably the most conspicuous and appalling of all, because it never fails to mark up menu items to ridiculous prices, packaged in tricky “Prix Fixe” menus which sound delightful and romantic until the hefty bill comes to the table.

However, despite the fact that Valentine’s Day is hyped and commercialized, it remains a great reminder of how important expressions of love are to the human race. So even if you hate the idea of heart shaped chocolates, long-stemmed roses, and cute little teddy bears, try to remember that it is a day of love. Don’t write off the entire day and risk hurting the feelings of someone you truly love.

I Can’t Eat That! – Balancing Healthy Eating and Normal Life

Original post can be found at: https://www.p28foods.com/i-cant-eat-balancing-healthy-eating-and-normal-life

Fast_Food hottie

There are countless challenges and roadblocks which can derail us from our efforts to follow a healthy meal plan, especially when we are faced with the indulgent foods that emerge during the holidays. Whether you are a seasoned competitor who is accustomed to following a strict meal plan, someone who wants to adopt healthier eating habits, or battling excess body weight, it can be very difficult to pass up regular restaurant meals, fast foods, and holiday treats. However, it IS possible to stay on track even in the face of such temptations.

The first and most important thing is to remember your GOAL, whether it is improved health, weight loss, or getting into contest shape for an upcoming event. Your goal should serve as a tangible mark which you are aiming for. I always tell my patients and weight management clients to post images of people who possess the type of physique they covet in a prominent place (such as a refrigerator) so that they can be reminded of their specific goal.

Here are other effective strategies to help you follow a healthy meal plan:

Keep forbidden foods out of the kitchen so that the temptation to eat something unhealthy is removed. This means that you need to avoid purchasing chips, crackers, cookies, ice cream, packaged pasta dinners and whatever other unhealthy foods you tend to gravitate towards. If unhealthy foods are not in your kitchen cupboards, you won’t be tempted to grab them and indulge.

Prep your meals at home beforehand. Meal prep can be tedious but it is well worth it when you consider the control you will have over what goes into your body. You can control ingredients, cooking method and portion sizes and maximize your chances of maintaining healthy eating habits. Once you have prepared your food, you can store single serving sizes in individual storage containers which are easy to pack when you need them.

Invest in a great food cooler bag. Trust me, you NEED one of these!

Make sure your meal plan is balanced. The best meal plans have lean protein, healthy fats and slow digesting carbohydrates. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that all fat is bad! You need certain healthy fats to maintain normal cellular function.

Avoid fast food restaurants. Fast food restaurants (and most restaurants for that matter) feature extremely unhealthy options which can completely destroy your efforts at reaching your health and fitness goals. You will also save a ton of money by avoiding the calorie and saturated fat laden options found at such establishments.

Don’t cave in to peer pressure. I don’t know what it is about friends and family, but it seems like they get some twisted thrill out of convincing others to eat forbidden foods. If you find yourself in such a situation, you need to ask yourself if it is worth unraveling your healthy eating habits in order to appease a relative or buddy. I have heard, “Awww, come on, a couple of bites won’t hurt ya!” from people who usually mean well but who are unaware of the psychological torture they might be putting me through. I honestly don’t want to be pressured into consuming something that will make me feel guilty or will not digest well . It isn’t worth it!