We all have them, holidays that for one reason or another just don’t work for us. Whether it’s awkward family get-togethers, expectations that we don’t live up to, or that others don’t live up to, for some reason it’s a holiday that can bring those all to the fore.
Officially it is meant for us to remember those who died serving our country. My father and father-in-law are both veterans and I thank God each of them survived their war experiences and know that there are many who were not so blessed. Blessings and peace to those of you who are remembering a loved one lost.
Unofficially it is the holiday weekend that marks the start of the summer season. This is usually a good thing, but if you are battling illness, autoimmune flare-ups, have skin issues that keep you from enjoying the sun, or the thought of putting on a bathing suit gives you panic attacks, Memorial Day can just be a reminder of all the things you aren’t able to enjoy.
Here are some quick ideas for managing how to stay on your Autoimmune Protocol while navigating the picnics and barbeques which will abound over the weekend.
1. When in doubt eat more vegetables. Yes, the red white and blue cool whip jello dessert that Aunt May brought to the potluck looks enticing. The sugar alone in such a thing can cause systemic inflammation and cause the aches and pains in your body to worsen. Veggies provide so much more of the nutrition (and anti-inflammatories) that your body is craving.
2. See if the grill master can leave some of the BBQ sauce off the ribs or chicken. While there are some great AIP sauces out there, if you’re new to this, you may just want to appreciate your meat in all its naked glory. It can still taste awesome.
3. Focus on the social aspects of the event rather than only what is on your plate. Engage someone new in conversation, learn about what’s going on in a relative’s life. Be present during these conversations, really let yourself be interested in them. It takes the focus off of what you think you can or can’t have and helps to alleviate the feelings of deprivation.
4. When the question inevitably arises, “Why aren’t you eating the baked potato, it’s healthy right?” Use it as an opportunity to gently inform those around you how you’ve learned that certain things, even though they may seem healthy, don’t work well for your body, just like some people can’t eat peanuts, you can’t eat nightshades.
5. Most of all concentrate on the good things you are beginning to do for your body. The nutrients you are starting to provide for it. The wonderful nourishment that will begin to change your life and next year, maybe that bathing suit will look a lot more possible.