Thanksgiving is a time to be grateful for all the wonderful things in our lives, as well as a time to enjoy a delicious meal shared with one’s family. Food should be enjoyed on Thanksgiving; this being said, Thanksgiving does not have to be a time to set back your weight-loss and health goals. I’m personally a fan of my family’s not-very-healthy recipes that I only have once a year. Healthier substitutions can be made, but if you want to enjoy traditional dishes with your family that is OK; just don’t overdo it!
Here are some tips to enjoy your Thanksgiving meal without sky-high calorie intake:
- Don’t starve yourself all day to “save up” on calories for your Thanksgiving meal
- You will likely end up overeating and pack on the calories
- Eat a healthy breakfast such as oatmeal or a Greek yogurt parfait (see my blog Quick and Healthy Breakfast Ideas for some inspiration)
- PORTION CONTROL!
- I strongly believe that you can eat what you want as long as it is appropriately portion-controlled
- Instead of filling half your plate with mashed potatoes, take a small scoop (1/2 cup if you have measuring cups handy) and top it with one tablespoon of gravy (instead of a pool of gravy)
- Avoid filling up your plate
- Sometimes your eyes can be larger than your stomach
- If you are full but still have food on your plate, you are more likely to overeat
- Don’t be part of the clean plate club
- If you are full, stop eating
- Teach this to your kids as well
- Trying each dish doesn’t mean you have to fill up on them
- Understandably, most people want to try the new chocolate torte that their aunt brought or the pumpkin cheesecake squares prepared by their niece. This being said, a sample size does not need to be a whole piece
- Limit yourself to a bite of each dish you want to try and go back for more of only a few which are your favorites
- Just because a dish contains vegetables does not mean it is low-calorie
- Green bean casserole must be low in calories because it is made with green beans, right? WRONG! This dish on average contains 275 calories per one-cup serving
- Most vegetable-containing dishes made for Thanksgiving are fairly high in calories and should be enjoyed in moderation
- Go for a family walk after your Thanksgiving meal
- Instead of going into a food coma and crashing on your couch after your Thanksgiving meal, get a group together and enjoy the great outdoors
Readers, what are your tips to avoid colossal calorie consumption during Thanksgiving?