Feature Article:

Holiday Recipe: Filled Cookies
From the book: Christmas In Dairyland (True Stories From a Wisconsin Farm) When I was a kid growing up on our dairy farm in Wisconsin 40 years ago, cookies with a date filling were my dad's favorite kind. Here is the recipe. 3/4 cup...
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Losing Weight During the Holiday Season

Additional Reading

By now, I am assuming your schedule is pretty hectic in preparation for the Holiday Festivities.

So its only inevitable that I ask of you to take a few moments to ponder on how you will handle the vast amounts of food involved with this holiday season. And to remind you not to forget about your personal health, goals and the purpose behind them.

As a gift I would like to share with you a few tried and true concepts on how to maintain or lose weight during this holiday season.

Thirteen years ago I became quite intrigued with the idea of LOSING WEIGHT DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON. Even knowing the chances of finding success with this idea was highly slim I was nevertheless still intrigued.

Please note, When I refer to, 'LOSING WEIGHT DURING THE HOLIDAY SEASON' I am NOT referring to:

  1. Avoiding family and friend get togethers,

  2. Avoiding all other meals to splurge during just the one dinner,

  3. Limiting my meals to five pounds of plain turkey and maybe a heaping tablespoon of mash potatoes or stuffing. (Not trying to be sarcastic--just being truthful),

  4. Taking supplements or DIET pills of any kind.

'Here's How I Found Success...

In the beginning, thirteen years ago, I simply began deciphering which foods I was going to eat for the holidays versus the foods I really needed to stay away from, like those scrumptious tasting butter rolls served at the beginning of dinner.

RESULTS: Weight loss didn't take place the first year. But I didn't gain weight either. What I really enjoyed was this preplanning approach especially the greater sense of feeling and being in control so I continued my efforts and after many years of enhancing this concept I created what's known as the Replace, Eliminate, Limit (REL) Theory.


'The REL Starts With REPLACING Foods. It Works Like This:

After making a mental note of the specific foods that may be available at the dinner table, start deciphering what foods to REPLACE and what foods to REPLACE them with.

Ask Yourself These Questions When Deciphering What Foods To Replace With What

~What foods can provide me with the same fullness yet without all the carbs? (TIP: The more creative you can be the better the results.)





~What FOODS would I be willing to settle for?






~Would I be willing to REPLACE the potato salad (major carbs) with regular salad (low in carbs) --maybe I could put more croutons on my salad... more cheese... maybe even splurge with some good ole Ranch or honey french dressing on the top.

~Write a list of FOODS you would like to REPLACE:





~After deciphering which foods to REPLACE, begin asking:

~Which foods should I ELIMINATE? Certainly there must be ONE food TO ELIMINATE, Just for control purposes, if anything else.

~What Foods Would You Like to Potentially ELIMINATE? Write them Down:





~If you are new to the REL concept perhaps ELIMINATE just ONE of the heavy carb ladened foods: rolls, potatoes, rice, noodles, breaded foods, etc.

~What ONE Food would you like to ELIMINATE? Write it down:





~If you are a die hard REL user and/or want an awesome challenge then ELIMINATE ALL desserts and replace with fruits. OR perhaps ELIMINATE just one or two types of desserts; pumpkin pie, fruit pies, chocolate cakes, nut pies (Pecan), etc. It's your choice.

NOTE: You can make your own rules too. For instance you may want to ELIMINATE all fruit pies and instead limit your desserts to sugar free fruit pies. Its' your choice.

~If you're feeling challenged and want to consider ELIMINATING more than one food item what would those food items be? Write them down:





~And lastly, foods to LIMIT.

~When it comes to LIMITING foods simply acknowledge those foods that quickly fill you up more than others.

For Instance:

I am going to LIMIT the stuffing so I can enjoy more of Mom's favorite Gooey Butter Cake?

Or, I could probably (just maybe) LIMIT the cream peas and fill up on some of the scrumptious salad.

Or I could choose to LIMIT both stuffing and sweet potatoes so I could have both versus splurging on just the one.

~Know what foods you want to LIMIT? Write them down.






'''Who know's. I was once told I think too much. Maybe thats the reason why REL works so well;

Doing more thinking then eating---LOL


I find that when we walk into the holidays blindly or should I say without a plan we tend to find ourselves gaining weight. Even worse caught up on the sugar high. This can be avoided and in many cases weight loss can be a reality DURING THE HOLIDAYS. So the first goal is to have an REL PLAN.

Use the REL theory if you like--it's pretty fun actually. You may even find yourself looking at the dinner table thinking maybe I'll REPLACE the green bean casserolle with the stuffing. No maybe I'll ELIMINATE the potatoes all together and instead treat myself to a small LIMITED piece of the scrumptious hot pecan pie.

THE REL Theory has been taken from the highly popular book---The Medium Carb Diet.


Have you ever thought as to wonder why the REL works so well?


All to often, we only need a one second distraction to prevent us from acting on those last minute, 'sound good' ideas.

Sure EVERYTHING looks good on the dinner table but if we have a focus... a plan... we tend not to reach for just anything and/or everything NOR splurge on those foods that are surely to put the weight on.

I know there is a lot of information this time around-- but I really want you to feel comfortable and complete this holiday season while managing your low carb regimen.

This REL thought process is generally all thats needed to prevent one from reaching out for all the fattening stuff.

RESULTS: REL has helped thousands of people succeed not just through the holiday seasons but every day of the year. Try just one of the ideas and I assure you'll feel more in control and happier with self as you look at the up and coming New Year.

Robyne Arrow



With cookingwithflavors.com, you'll discover how easy it is to:

  • Learn how to create flavorful low carb meals,

  • Learn how to create low caloric, low fat, low carb meals,

  • Learn how to use everyday ingredients versus wayward, hard to find ingredients,

  • Learn how to read the new food labels,

  • Learn secrets to losing weight on low carb diets,

  • Learn about the new MEDIUM CARB DIET,

  • Learn how to entertain low carb guests,

  • Hone your low carb cooking skills,

  • Set realistic eating and healthy weight loss goals.

  • Plus much more

Robyne Arrow, a successful 23 year veteran of the Low Carb lifestyle is the author of eight books including 'Cooking Low Carb with Flavor' and the popular 'Medium Carb Diet.' She has helped thousands of individuals worlwide overcome the many hurdles to low carb lifestyles. http://cookingwithflavors.com.


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