I’m writing this from a Starbucks in Taiwan, and when I came in this morning… it was clearly time for the holidays. Christmas music… a festive tree… specially designed red and green cups…

And of course, the specialty holiday drinks.

Flavored lattes galore, beautifully photographed, and displayed everywhere throughout the store. There they were, topped with whipped cream and swirls of flavored syrups. Hello food porn!

Suddenly, I found myself thinking… Maybe I should get one of those… They look really good… I mean, Christmas only comes around once a year… 

Think of those holiday promos as Sirens of the junk food world! Don’t answer to their cries! 

Hint No. 2: Avoid Promo FOMO

The holiday chocolate promo section at a local store here in Taiwan. See? It’s everywhere!!!!

Food companies spend millions of dollars on advertising campaigns, and they do their research to make sure that everything – from the name of the product, the flavors they choose, to the packaging – will hook you in and get your money.

During the holiday season, this will become even more pervasive, as a lot of items will be “limited holiday edition” which is designed to trigger your food FOMO.

Before you hit up your local grocery store that’s loaded with these temptation land mines, be mentally prepared. Here are a few tips:

  • Allow yourself one “impulse buy” that you can have as your #satisfyingsnack throughout the holidays, or share with friends.
  • Stay away from the aisles that you know will tempt you. Don’t go down the candy aisle… you don’t need it!
  • Remember: these advertisements are designed to “hook” you. The act of being tempted is simply that. It doesn’t mean that you’re going to fail at weight loss, and trust me, it will pass.
  • Put your FOMO aside. Delicious foods exist everywhere, all the time. Yes, you might miss out on the Blue Bell Christmas Cookie ice cream, but this world is full of culinary delights. They will always be around. Missing one thing doesn’t mean the rest of your life is going to be a wasteland of bread and water. (For more on this, check out my previous blog on having a food meltdown.)

In the end, I ordered my usual drink from Starbucks. A grande cappuccino with one pump of vanilla. It’s a treat without being a sugar bomb.

Everything is about balance and I’m not suggesting you don’t take part in any holiday goodies, but make sure it’s something you really want, and not just an impulse buy. 

Happy shopping!


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