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It’s New Year’s Eve and I’m still reeling from the Christmas holiday. I’m sure you feel the same way! This time of year we move so quickly between the holidays that they all blend together, and so does eating poorly.

I don’t know about you, but the holidays are one of the single-most difficult times of the year to maintain a specific routine of what to eat. We start with one bite of that chocolate fudge that mom made and it’s downhill from there. Today I am two days in on making allowances, and I cannot remember the last time that I had such terrible restless legs. Ugh! I wish I wasn’t that person who had to watch what I eat so carefully. Why can’t I just be the person that gets to calorie count and get back to it tomorrow when the new year starts? Instead, I’m stuck knowing full well that all the sugar and gluten is wreaking havoc on my body. But feeling this terrible hopefully will be enough for me to remember why I do what I do.

If we admit it, none of us should be eating as much sugar as we are served up each Christmas, but yet we keep making it, bringing it, and eating it. You think we would learn and we could live with just a few less trays of Christmas cookies and treats. Why is it that we can’t bring people a tray of savory appetizers for Christmas? No, it has to be sugar! I would love to know where this tradition started and how we as Americans have taken it to extreme cookie craziness.

Centuries ago, refined sugar was only available to the wealthy, so when it came time to celebrating Christmas and providing indulgences to our children at the holiday, cookies and candies would have been the once a year treat. It wouldn’t have been a staple ingredient on our pantry shelves. Now we have this sugar all year long, and then we don’t just have one cookie recipe we make. We have 5 or more.

So as I look to enjoy the New Year holiday, I will turn to the more savory treats and start working my way toward better health. I will make better decisions that will not just help my waistline but the very fibers of my being. So as you ring in the New Year tonight, enjoy celebrating new beginnings by eating something better than just leftover sugar-filled treats. Tomorrow marks the start of something clean and new — 2020!