With thanksgiving coming up this weekend ( for us canadians) and of course the winter holiday season not too far behind we realize that a huge issue for some raw foodists is what to do when you are on a raw living diet and celebrating/eating over at friends and family over the holidays.  Some people end up “giving in” and eating cooked food out of guilt, as to not upset the host who spent hours cooking a beautiful meal,  only to feel guilty themselves afterwards, which is not helpful for anyone.  Some people feel as though they will be singled out, ridiculed for their choices etc and just plain made to feel uncomfortable.  So what can we do?  The holidays are about spending time with loved ones and should not create stress for us based on our food and lifestyle choices.  Nowadays with so many allergies and sensitivities to food it is becoming more of a norm for at least someone in the family to be avoiding one thing or another at meal time.  First of all remember why you have made these choices, be proud of your choices to better your health and don’t feel guilty for making health a priority.  It doesn’t mean we need to force others to believe our ideas are correct or better than theirs, but the fact that we do, means they to need to respect our values equally as well.
Once you have been eating raw for sometime most friends and family will come to an understanding that that is just how you do things and will be supportive, making family mealtimes much easier.  It’s the newer raw foodies who are left explaining what and why they are not eating the “family meal” that often have the most trouble, but of course as time goes on this too passes.
Here a few helpful hints, tried and tested.
The less attention you draw to yourself the less others will react, most people really are busy enjoying their own plates and if you just simply sit back and enjoy yours as well they may not even speak up.
Its always wise if you are headed out to someone’s house that doesn’t already know your dietary choicesthat you do inform them ahead of time.  Simply mention that you are grateful for the invite and look forward to spending time with the group but will be bringing your own food due to different dietary preferences.  Offer to bring a portion big enough for others to try. We have done this on many occasions and had friends enjoy a plate we have made only to tell them afterwards it’s all raw. They are in disbelief at how fabulous it tastes and now they always request that we bring something raw to the dinner parties!! 🙂  We even have a few of them jumping on board too!
We also have friends who will purposely plan their fasts around holiday time. That way they don’t bring their own food nor do they consume anything at all and simply enjoy the company.
Be ready to educate those who are interested, but no need to volunteer any information if it is not asked of you when it comes to the raw diet. Some people might actually reevaluate their own practices after hearing what you know.

Let’s be thankful for that and leave all food related stress at the door and enjoy a fantastic and healthy weekend 🙂

 
This Thanksgiving and always, let’s all remember what’s important – family and friends. 
What is your favourite raw Thanksgiving dish?
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