Creeping guilt is worse than creeping pounds

Posted January 18, 2018

Creeping guilt is worse than creeping pounds

I’ve just eaten the last Christmas mince pie. It tasted great!

In my defence, it was a mini mince pie. Less than 200 calories. So not much harm done. There’s also some leftover Stilton cheese in the fridge. Better eat that too before it goes out of date.  Quite a few calories in cheese mind you. Oh, and that bottle of champagne is still unopened which, in our house, is a miracle on par with the birth of baby Jesus. I suppose it would be wrong to drink it now that the festivities are over. 

See what’s happening? The guilt is creeping in. 

A few weeks ago I was being encouraged by television and online advertising to eat and drink whatever I wanted (go on - it’s Christmas; it’s ok to treat yourself!). Now the same media is applying mental thumbscrews to make me feel like a sinner.  All that overindulgence? Pure gluttony. And as we know, gluttony always comes with a price. A ruined waistline and a pickled liver. 

A giant sculpture recently installed on the Southbank in London serves as a graphic reminder of the damage I’ve inflicted on myself, should I need one. It’s 12 feet high and covered in real lard. The ‘fatberg’ represents the massive collective national weight gain over the festive period.  It’s supposed to make us think seriously about the health impact of stuffing our faces. My first thought is that, knowing how much Brits like to party, I’m surprised the fatberg isn’t bigger. My second is unprintable. 

I refuse to start the New Year full of self loathing. Yet everywhere I look I’m bombarded with insidious health kick messages. Nigella’s recipe books have been subtly relegated to the back of the shelf (too wanton). Prime position is now given to healthy eating suggestions -100 variations on miso soup; fresh, exciting ways with spiralised vegetables (trust me, there are none!), lots of kale and lentils. It’s the type of food that only the sanctimonious can stomach. 

Speaking of sanctimonious. At the start of the month Lorraine Kelly launched a Lose the Booze campaign on her ITV morning show. Always one to lead by example she’s already ditched the drink and is half way through an alcohol-barren January. I checked out the Lorraine website where I was encouraged to click a button to make a pledge. Needless to say I didn’t - any hint of a nudge towards behavioural change elicits the opposite response in me. 

I don’t go for the all or nothing approach. It’s little steps for me. Like cutting back to two glasses of wine from three. I am however having home-made vegetable soup for tea tonight. I also managed to drag my lardy arse to Pilates not once but twice this week. Like I say … little steps. 

Image: Thriva

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