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A Yogic Principle We Wish Didn't Exist on Thanksgiving

Happy #Thanksgiving everyone! 🦃 While most yogis write about gratitude, I think this is a perfect timing to remind ourselves about another aspect of a #yogiclife – or for that matter a #healthylife in general – #Brahmacharya, or moderation.

Coming from a different culture, I quickly adopted Thanksgiving as one of my favorite holidays. What’s there not to like: stuffing myself until I reach a blissful state of food coma 🤤 on Thursday and spending the money I don’t have on the deals I don’t need 🤑 on Friday, while sending my gratitude to the generous US government for giving us not one, but two (!!) extra days-off in a row.

But if you think I’m a party 💩 -er, don’t rush to judge me. When it comes to food, I am one of the most gluttonous people I know (“Fries or onion rings?” – “I’ll have both, please!”). Yet, after years of yoga practice, I started seeing a little bit beyond the self-indulging urges of my mind. Do I need to get myself into that food coma to enjoy the holiday? No. I do want to eat well, but overeating is completely unnecessary. Unfortunately, like most people, I am prone to overeating.

Have you heard about a bottomless soup bowl experiment?

Briefly, a test group was unknowingly eating from self-refilling bowls, and as the result consumed 73% more soup than the control group, without however feeling more sated. These findings are consistent with the notion that the amount of food on a plate or bowl increases intake because it influences consumption norms and expectations and it lessens one's reliance on self-monitoring. It seems that people use their eyes 👀 to count calories and not their stomachs 🤰.

My point is, practicing moderation on Thanksgiving is not about dieting, but about protecting yourself from all those unnecessary calories. Practicing moderation, just like doing yoga, creates mental strength. I’m not urging you to go and throw away your turkeys, no. But this holiday can be a perfect opportunity to work out your willpower muscles 💪🏻. So maybe fix yourself a smaller plate and see how it goes. (You can always get more later 🙊)

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