Thanksgiving is an excellent opportunity to get together with friends and family and enjoy a holiday feast that traditionally starts with turkey and yams and ends with pumpkin pies and ice cream. Who can say no to that? You might feel like you need to skip the holiday feast to stay on track with your fitness goals this fall, but that’s not necessary. You can still take part in the Thanksgiving feast while staying true to your diet and exercise routine. Try these HiDow tips for a healthy Thanksgiving!
It may seem counterintuitive to eat a complete meal before you sit down for a whole afternoon of feasting, right? Actually, eating a complete breakfast the morning of Thanksgiving will allow you to eat a healthy meal where you can incorporate fruits and grains that might be absent at Thanksgiving dinner. Eating breakfast on Thanksgiving morning will also give you more control over your appetite later on in the day! If you haven’t eaten all day, you’ll be tempted to eat too much, too quickly. This can help with portion control and saying, “no thank you” to seconds and thirds.
Really want to have a healthy Thanksgiving? Go out and get active with your friends and family! It might be tempting to stay in and watch the annual NFL on Thanksgiving Day game. Pick up a football and head outside for a little game of two-hand-touch. Not only will you work up an appetite for later, but you’ll also create a calorie deficit in preparation for the feast to come!
Thanksgiving dinner tends to be a buffet of delicious and traditional holiday favorites that will have your eyes going crazy with hunger. One of the best ways to have a healthy Thanksgiving is to limit the size of your portions. Go around and look at what holiday favorites are on the table and choose only your favorites! You’re likely to finish everything on your plate, so choose a smaller plate and eat little by little.
Another way that you can limit your portions is by slowing down when you eat. Put the fork down in between bites and really enjoy the food. Thanksgiving dinner is as much about the communal experience as it is about the food. Enjoy conversations with family in between bites and take your time. This will let your brain catch up with your stomach and let you know when you are full before you overeat!
There is sure to be a ton of food leftover at Thanksgiving dinner. Instead of choosing to head back into the kitchen for seconds, enjoy some dessert, and leave leftovers for tomorrow.
Finally, remember that the holidays are special occasions and it’s OK not to be so strict when it comes to your diet and exercise. Be realistic with your goals and allow some room for flexibility when it comes to your health and fitness goals this Thanksgiving.