5 Ways To Hack Your Thanksgiving (Plus Bulletproof Pumpkin Pie!)
It’s that time of year again. The holidays are upon us, bringing with them the promise of delicious food enjoyed in good company.
As holidays go, Thanksgiving is probably the most Bulletproof-friendly. Giving thanks, a simple and powerful mind hack, is right there in the name, and Thanksgiving dinner usually includes staples that are pretty Bulletproof: turkey, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and buttered green beans, to name a few.
Nonetheless, this season can be a tricky time if you want to stay Bulletproof. Here are a few quick tips for upgrading your Thanksgiving.
1) Prepare for questions about your diet
It sounds silly, but putting together a 30-second spiel about your diet will save you a lot of hassle, especially if your Thanksgiving has a long guest list. People will be curious about why you eat the way you do. Aunt Jeanine wonders why you’re passing on dinner rolls. Uncle Cal asks you why you don’t want a beer. Cousin Richard’s interested in how you stay in such good shape. Then it’s back to Aunt Jeanine, who had one too many bourbons, forgot about your dinner roll conversation, and is now hurt that you’re skipping her homemade apple pie, because it used to be your favorite, and –
You get the point. Stumbling through explanation after explanation of the way you eat gets tedious quickly (“Well, you start the morning with a blend of coffee and butter. No, seriously. It’s actually very tasty. But it has to be grass-fed butter because – what’s that? No, I’m not going to have a heart attack at 35. See, it’s all about the type of fat…”).
Instead, plan a succinct description of your diet that you can use throughout the day. It’ll make things easier on you. It’s also good to have in your back pocket for the rest of the year. When you go against mainstream food and lifestyle recommendations it tends to make people inquisitive.
Oh, and be ready for a little mockery. There’s always that one relative who jokes about your diet all night (“Hey, are those potatoes grass-fed?”). Patience is a virtue.
2) Carry activated charcoal
This hack is the old standby. If you’re going to eat or drink something that’s not too Bulletproof, toss back a few capsules of activated charcoal with it. The charcoal will bind to toxins in the food and prevent them from damaging your gut or giving you brain fog.
3) Really give thanks
Dishing out gratitude is an easy way to spread happiness and build connections over dinner. When you’re all eating, suggest that everyone go around the table and list something he or she is grateful for.
Gratitude is one of the most potent happiness hacks you can do. Here’s a recent study: once a week, 201 people wrote down events for which they were grateful, events that annoyed them, or neutral events. The people who focused on gratitude reported being 25% happier than the group that focused on hassles . The gratitude group members also went to the gym an average of 90 minutes more each week and got sick less. Give gratitude a try! You’ll be grateful you did.
4) Bring a Bulletproof dish
If you’re not cooking for Thanksgiving and you’re concerned about what you’re going to eat, call up your host and offer to bring a dish. It’s a double win: you’ll make his or her day a little easier, and you’ll ensure that there’s something Bulletproof on the menu . Here are two tasty options for Thanksgiving fare.
This recipe is from Bulletproof: The Cookbook, which features 125 Bulletproof recipes, from savory to sweet. This particular one is a deliciously creamy, bacon-infused upgrade to mashed potatoes.
- 1/2 pound pastured, uncured bacon, diced
- 3/4 to 1 large head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 4 tablespoons grass-fed unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons Bulletproof Brain Octane oil (or MCT or coconut oil)
- 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- Sea salt
- In a large skillet, lightly cook the bacon over medium-low heat. Do not let it get crispy (keep those fats intact) and do not let the fat smoke. Set the bacon aside and reserve the fat in the pan.
- In a pot, bring water to a boil. Add the cauliflower, cover, and steam until tender, 15 to 20 minutes.
- In a high-powered blender, blend three-fourths of the cauliflower with the butter, oil, vinegar, and salt to taste. Stir in the bacon and remaining cauliflower. Pulse the mixture until chunky. For amazing flavor, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat (as long as it didn’t smoke when you were cooking the bacon at a low temperature).
If you want to go the dessert route, you can always whip up some…
Bulletproof Pumpkin Pie
This is amazing, filling, delicious, and creamy, and it’s easy to make, with no baking. If you want a crust, mix almond flour with just enough butter to make it hold together, add a dash of salt, and press into your pan.
The pie serves 6-8 people. Use your blender…just add everything.
- 2 cups steamed pumpkin, warm (or BPA-free canned pumpkin)
- 5 Tbs Brain Octane Oil
- ¼ cup grass-fed butter
- 2 raw egg yolks
- 1 cup coconut milk (BPA-free)
- 1/3 cup xylitol or erythritol
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2 tsp pumpkin spice (you can buy it pre-made and organic, or make enough to last a while: mix 1/4 cup cinnamon, 4 tsp nutmeg, 4 tsp ginger, and 2 tsp ground allspice, store it in a airtight jar away from heat and light)
- 2 extra tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 5 Tbs of Collagelatin, dissolved into 1/3 cup of boiling water
Blend everything together until it’s creamy, pour it into a dish (or a pie crust if you’re a traditionalist), and chill it in the freezer for at least an hour, or in the fridge overnight. For extra decadence, dollop some whipped coconut cream on top.
Show up with one or both of these dishes and you’re set. Be prepared for them to go quickly.
5) Go off the rails
Here’s another idea. Go wild. Eat whatever you want. Down the mycotoxin-filled beer. Munch on chips with chemical-laden onion dip. Get some artificial sweetener in there somewhere. It could benefit you in the long run; for more on why, check out this blog post. Fair warning: if you have a big presentation or other important event the week after Thanksgiving, you may want to skip the junk food. If you go off the rails you won’t be your usual sharp self for a few days, until your body processes all the crap you ate and gets itself back on track.
Thanks for reading and happy Thanksgiving!