I’ve been following the endo diet for a couple of years now. Sure, I fall off the wagon sometimes, but generally, it’s become a way of life that helps me better manage endometriosis.
In the past few years, Christmas has been tricky, but it’s been getting easier and easier. I love my endo diet Christmas dinner and treats. There is such a huge array of offerings in health shops and online now that you can pretty much replace all of your old favorites with some new, less endo-triggering options.
Of course, enjoy yourself and relax, but if you’d like to continue following the endo diet as best you can, here are my suggestions:
Chocolate is one of my very favorite things, and truth be told, I love it even more now that I’m on the endo diet.
Thanks to the rise in veganism and healthy eating, you can find lots of raw and vegan chocolates that are absolutely incredible. Raw chocolate holds on to its nutrients as it’s heated below a certain temperature, whereas normal chocolate loses the antioxidants, magnesium, etc. Opting for raw vegan chocolate means you get a boost of vitamins and minerals, you avoid the dairy, and most of the time (check the ingredients) you’re eating smaller amounts of sugar that also is unrefined.
Whether you’re veggie or avoiding meat because of the endo diet, there are some amazing nut roast and squash recipes online. The in-store nut roast options are getting better, too. Head to a health store like Whole Foods for a good quality option.
If you really miss the meat and you’re thinking of getting “fake” meat, please look at the ingredients. Most of these are made with heavily processed soy, which can have a negative impact on endometriosis. It also often is made with other processed foods and artificial coloring and flavors. My suggestion would be to really enjoy those slices of beef or turkey on Christmas Day, and then go back to reducing your meat intake after the festive season rather than having a substitute. Try to choose organic and good quality, if possible.
Christmas is made for dairy queens. Ice cream, double cream, hot cocoa, cake … The list goes on.
But again, the evolution in veganism has come to the rescue of us on the endo diet. You can now get the most insanely good cashew-based ice cream, oat cream, a huge array of plant-based milks, and vegan dessert recipes far and wide.
Again, check the ingredients to see whether they use soy and what kind of sugar they use. Of course, sugar is sugar, and if you’re sensitive, eating an entire tub of ice cream probably is not going to help an endo sister out, so just be aware of your triggers.
If you’re someone who likes the taste of alcohol, enjoys a cocktail, or feels the pressure from others, it’s getting easier to avoid alcohol at Christmas.
Additionally, Ruby Warrington is leading the way with the “sober curious” movement, which you can find out about in her interview with Jessica Murnane.
Recently, I’ve been taking an anti-inflammatory supplement and a vegan omega oil to help keep inflammation at bay, and it’s really worked well. My PMS was down significantly and my cramps were forgotten with a dose of painkillers during my most recent period.
While this may not work for everyone, supplements could support you during this tricky time. Most women with endometriosis are deficient in magnesium, which helps to reduce cramps, so getting yourself some magnesium water could help minimize the intensity of them if and when they kick in. Also, try to take a good anti-inflammatory and omega blend (speak to a nutritionist or in-store healthcare assistant) if possible. Sugar, dairy, meat, alcohol, and gluten all heighten inflammation, and inflammation increases pain levels, so counteracting what you’ve eaten with a high-quality supplement could help decrease the impact.
What are your favorite endo-friendly treats at Christmas?
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