food · thoughts

Top 5 Tips for a Healthy Thanksgiving

This might not be what you think….

The big day is just about here!  Time for turkey, stuffing, stretchy pants, and the kickoff to the holiday season (even though we’ve been seeing Christmas decorations in CVS since Halloween)

You’re seeing these round ups aaaalllllll over the internet – make the holidays healthy! do this! do that!  Despite the information overload, hear me out!  As a current nutrition grad student (and an avid reader of food and nutrition blogs and media), I have come up with a few tips of my own to share.

So, let’s get to it!

tips-for-a

Tip #1  First thing in the morning…..do whatever you want.  That’s right-whatever!  You’ve likely heard a million times that you should start your day active!  Run a Turkey Trot, go for a walk, do 100 burpees, just get a good sweat in any way possible.  Last year, my mom and I woke up jazzed and ready for a twosome turkey trot!  We jogged away from home (for not that long) until my fingers and toes felt like ice.  We scurried back home, I showered, and I spent the rest of the morning plopped on the couch watching the parade – an equally good option.  If exercise will pump you up for the day, do it!  If you think of holidays as 100% relaxation, don’t force a sweat sesh you’ll hate.

Tip #2 Throughout the day, EAT whatever you want!  If you wake up hungry, eat breakfast!  I pretty much always eat breakfast.  Every day.  Even if I am planning on having brunch (because pre brunch snack is a real necessity).  So, don’t feel like you have to “save up” your calories for the big meal, and also don’t feel forced to eat a lot earlier if you aren’t that hungry.  Listen to that body, people.

Tip #3 Mind your manners.  Sure, keep the elbows off the table, napkin in your lap, and all those good etiquette tips, but what I really mean is, watch your words.  This article gets the point across – just don’t obsess in a negative way about food!  This is a day to be thankful.  While the dishes on the table may seem indulgent because they are out of the ordinary, remember why we are gathering: to appreciate.  Try to brush off or ignore the comments about how “bad” something might be, and focus on gratitude so you can enjoy every bite.

Tip #4 Don’t be afraid of seconds!  Again – listen to your body.  I have a personal habit of being so stuffed at dessert time, but always ending up grabbing that slice of pie (or two…almost always two) around 9 or 10pm.  No shame.  If you’re truly hungry for more, get it!  If you are enjoying the celebration so much and just want another bite of happiness, do it!  Don’t feel judged and don’t let anyone make you uncomfortable for enjoying yourself.

Tip #5 Also remember, there are (usually) always leftovers.  If you’re like me, you might also have a little stomach and feel full pretty fast.  Knowing myself, I hate to feel so uncomfortably full that I can’t move, and that happens quickly.  It can feel awkward to stop eating when everyone around you is going for third or fourth helpings and savoring the giant meal.  Just be confident in your choices, slow your eating to keep pace if you don’t want to be the first one done, and remember…that 9 or 10pm slice of pie is totally possible (as well as turkey and stuffing for days after the feast)

HAPPY TURKEY DAY!  Have a GREAT one!  And please share in the comments – what are your personal tips for a healthy holiday? I’d love to hear!

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