How to Enjoy Thanksgiving without Overindulging
Healthy holiday eating can be both delicious and nutritious. While the typical holiday dinner contains a whopping 4,500-plus calories, according to the Calorie Control Council, a delectable Thanksgiving meal doesn’t have to leave you feeling as stuffed as the turkey. Thanksgiving eating tips for a healthier holiday include six easy ways to keep calories in check while still enjoying the tastes of the season.
Add more fruits and veggies
As a host or guest bringing a dish to share on Thanksgiving, adding more fruits and vegetables to the table is a great way to keep the calorie count in a healthier range. Traditional vegetable trays with fresh cut carrots, celery, broccoli, cauliflower and grape tomatoes offer a bounty of healthy snack choices. Eat more of the fresh snacks and limit your intake of salty, high-fat snacks to one or two tastes.
Consider filling a beautiful bowl, such as the 9-inch Country Cupboard bowl from Pfaltzgraff, with green and red grapes. The sweet treat will appeal to many and can be set out with the snacks or on the dessert table.
Reduce plate size
A traditional dinner plate measures 11 inches. Switch out dinner-size plates for luncheon plates measuring 9 inches. Less plate space helps encourage healthier sized portions. Luncheon plate sets from Corelle offer stunning designs, guaranteed to impress guests with their stylish beauty. Thanksgiving dinner tips for healthier holiday eating don’t have to be complicated or require time-consuming calorie counting. With a smaller plate, one scoop of buttery mashed potatoes still looks like a large serving.
Instead of eating two full-size portions of pumpkin and pecan pie, ask for a half-slice of the pumpkin with a half-slice of the pecan pie. You will still be able to enjoy the flavors of both indulgent desserts but with fewer calories. Use the same technique with appetizers and the main meal. Treat your Thanksgiving indulgences as a tasting meal — one or two bites of each treat instead of full servings.
Take time between bites
Fast eating often results in extra calories. Take the time in between bites to have conversation with the person sitting next to or across from you at the table. Savor each taste and enjoy the meal, bite by bite.
Avoid camping out on the couch during Thanksgiving festivities. Socialize and circulate throughout the room, keeping on the move. Movement is a healthier choice and can help you beat the urges to hang out at the snack table grazing for hours before the main meal. Consider starting a new tradition after dinner by going out for a family walk. Take a group walk, and then come back to enjoy dessert.
Limit alcohol consumption
Healthy holiday eating isn’t limited to just food. Many alcoholic drinks have a high calorie count. Reduce consumption, opting to indulge in one favorite specialty drink and a glass of wine with dinner. Then, switch to water, adding a lemon slice for a bit of sass and flavor.
- Barb Hopkins