Here are a few tips for the happiest, healthiest turkey day yet!
1. Focus on Thanks-giving. Giving Thanks. That’s what it’s all about. Most families tend to rush through a humungo, chaotic, larger than life meal that took days to prepare, and are lucky if everything’s still civil and sober by dessert. Embrace your company and focus on family. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season, which can definitely be a stressful time. Before the fun begins, take at least 5-10 minutes to actually ponder what you’re thankful for. What has changed for the better since last Thanksgiving? Who are you grateful to spend time with this holiday? Make it a point to think about how to truly live in the moment and enjoy the day and the season, not just the short-lived feast.
2. Eat all day. Ok, not allllll day, but don’t (do NOT) fast for the feast! If you skip breakfast and lunch to save room or calories, you’ll be starving, your blood sugar will be off, and you’ll make up for it big time later. Eat a balanced breakfast and even a small lunch or snack so that you’re more likely to eat dinner as dinner, not as the all-you-can-fit buffet. Smoothies are a great option for a light meal, packed with nutrients that won’t fill you up or weigh you down!
3. Chew more, eat less. Chewing is underrated and overlooked. The simple act of tasting and chewing our food (really chewing, like a lot) aids digestion and satisfaction in monumental ways. If you’re mindful of chewing each and every bite, you may not have to loosen that belt after all!
4. Eat the gosh darn turkey! We all know that the turkey is not the problem. Turkey is a delicious source of lean protein that is low in fat, low on the glycemic index, and full of healthy goodness. It’s those caramelized side dishes, dinner rolls, and pieces of pie that do us in. Let’s all stop blaming the bird and aim for a well-balanced plate of protein, carbs, and lots of veggies.
5. Have your pie and eat it too. Splurging is o.k., normal, and enjoyable. Just keep in mind that this is not the last supper and that servings, bites, tastes, and even slivers add up. Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be a diet disaster. Instead of loading your plate once, twice, three times before dessert is served, take your time in choosing your favorites and indulge mindfully.
One Healthy Breakdown: focus on what the day is all about! (hint: it’s not mashed potatoes!)