November 10, 2021

Tips for a Healthy Thanksgiving Day

Fitness, General, Healthy Living, Leg / Vein Health, Nutrition, Weight Loss

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and to many of us, that means delicious food is on the way. We all love spending time with family and friends, but there’s no better way to laugh and reminisce than with turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pie and other family favorites spread across the table.

We have grown accustomed to gaining weight while splurging on food during the holidays. With a little know-how, you can still enjoy your favorite Thanksgiving dishes while maintaining balance for your weight management.

Get active.

Eat less and exercise more is the winning formula to prevent weight gain. Many cities and towns offer a 5K on Thanksgiving. Locally, Des Moines hosts the Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving. Named “Top Trot” in Iowa by Runners’ World Magazine five years in a row, the event allows runners to sprint, jog or walk with family and friends before a day of indulging in sweets.

Start a family tradition that involves activity or exercise. Hiking or biking is a great start. Or huddle up in the backyard for a football game.

Eat breakfast.

Eating a nutritious breakfast can give you more control over your appetite. Start the day with an egg and a slice of whole-wheat toast, or a bowl of whole-grain cereal with low-fat milk to prevent you from being hungry until family arrives.

Lighten up.

Provide food options with less fat, sugar and calories for you and your guests. Sugar substitutes and fat-free broth are good starting points for healthier options.

Control portions.

Like any seasoned Thanksgiving eater, you browse the table to find your favorites before diving in, and this can help portion control. While glancing over the soon-to-be-gone favorites, select reasonable-sized portions to fill your plate. In addition, only choose options you can’t eat all year; this will prevent you from over-eating items you can savor all year long.

Skip the seconds.

Think of your future self on Thanksgiving, and leave enough food for leftovers to enjoy the rest of the holiday weekend. In addition, limiting yourself to one plate can help you not overeat — and help you save room for a tasty dessert.

Savor slowly.

Eating slowly can help aid the feeling of fullness. To help you adopt this new discipline, put your fork down between bites and truly take pleasure in each mouthful.

Be alcohol aware.

Calories from alcohol can add up quickly. Have a glass of wine or a wine spritzer, and between alcoholic beverages, drink water. This will help you stay hydrated and sober before a day of shopping on Black Friday.

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