Surviving the Holiday Potluck

cc richardmasoner

It’s that time of year again. When people gather to celebrate holidays. There will be camaraderie. There will be good cheer. And there will be food.

The holiday potluck table can be filled with carbs and fat and sugar. All things dangerous for a person with diabetes. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be managed. And that doesn’t mean you can’t have a good time.

Here are some ideas:

  • Bring something you can eat. Make it yummy, not a penance dish. A favorite casserole or salad. Make it exotic or unusual. It doesn’t have to be a lot of work to prepare. A box of chocolate covered macadamia nuts are a personal favorite. Make the portions small. Mini brownies and mini cupcakes are pretty easy to find these days.


  • Take a smaller serving. There’s no rule that says you have to put all that food on your plate. Besides there’s always someone else who is watching what they’re eating or small children, so the “left over” won’t go to waste.


  • Get something to drink first off and nurse that drink for a while. It’s hard to juggle a plate and a drink at the same time. Spend more time mingling and less time eating. You can also nurse a drink after you’ve finished your plate. With a drink in your hand it’s clear you’re enjoying the festivities and your host will be less likely to insist that you should be eating too.


  • If you run into someone who insists that you must “have just one bite” or you “have to try” this or that tell them you have to do your labs for your next doctor’s appointment in a couple of days and don’t want your numbers to be too high. Whether it’s true or not, this will stop most people. If the person is really insistent then offer to make a plate for “later.” Whether you really eat it or not later is up to you.


  • Of course, you can alwasy stay home. I mention this partially in jest. The holidays can be a stressful busy time. Sometimes it’s best all the way around to step out of the hubbub and preserve your sanity with a little “me” time. Just remember that it’s an option.