It’s almost time to sit down to a lovely family meal and take a moment to give thanks for all that you’ve received. It’s a great way to enjoy some time with those who you love most. However, you’ll also want to keep an eye on just how much you slip on your goal of wanting to be healthier. Did you know that you can stay healthy and still enjoy your holiday? It’s all about putting the right tips to work for you.
10 tips for healthy and satisfying Thanksgiving
Since no one wants to be dealing with a letdown, these tips are intended to be healthy and satisfying so that you can enjoy our dinner without blowing your healthy living plans. They’ll be so practical, and you won’t even know you’re compromising! Which is precisely the point.
1. Opt for water
While we are all tempted by enjoying a glass of wine or some soda, consider restricting yourself to just water. If you want to enjoy something a little different, you can allow yourself one “fancy” drink with your dinner. The goal is to make sure that you avoid drinking your calories. Plus, water is great for amping up your metabolism and easing digestion!
2. Ask to make the gravy
The gravy is often loaded with fat, butter, and salt. None of these things are going to be good for your waistline! Consider asking to make gravy and bring it with you -- or just make it there as a kitchen aid! When you start it, use collagen protein bone broth in place of your classic stock, and you’ll be immediately enjoying a richer choice both in flavor and in nutrients. Hidden vitamins -- yay!
3. Seek out the pumpkin
Did you know that pumpkin is a superfood? It seriously is! It has a lot of vitamins in a low-calorie form, and it’s also a staple for Thanksgiving tables! While you will have to be mindful that most pumpkin products (like pie) do contain sugar, it is a better choice than other options!
4. Eat everything a little slower
This perhaps might be the hardest tip. After all, everything smells so GOOD. But, eating slower will help you eat less, and it will also give you even more of a chance to savor it! Plus, it helps with digestion and helps you to keep from overeating. There are only good things from resisting the urge to stuff as much into your face as quickly as possible.
5. Prioritize your cheat areas
Everyone has a favorite part of the meal. It could be scalloped potatoes. Or perhaps it’s apple pie. Maybe it’s the stuffing. Show some love to Manuka honey cookies, as Manuka honey is the best replacement for sugar and healthier too. Whatever it is that you love most, make it a priority. While you want to make sure that you leave some for everyone else to enjoy, feel free to enjoy those parts you love the most.
The kicker? You want to choose one thing. That is: prioritize which you want more, the apple pie or the stuffing. This way, you can enjoy it knowing that it’s your treat. Not just one treat of five to come. It’s best to decide this before you arrive!
6. Get up and move between courses
Do whatever you can to space out your courses. Get up and move after you’ve had some snacks. Do the same thing before dessert. It’ll help everything digest a bit and help you stay comfortable in terms of your actual stomach itself! Most people will have no problem spacing out dessert, anyway, since most will be feeling full after the main meal!
7. Snack cautiously
Speaking of snacking, you’re going to want to pay careful attention to what you’re snacking on. Sure, pretzels and chips are delicious. But do you want to fill up on that and have no room for the main course? Try to at least start with healthy snacks. Or just skip the snacks entirely! No one will notice.
8. Don’t skip on the veggies
Not only are roasted or boiled veggies delicious, but they’re also great sources for vitamins and minerals. Since Thanksgiving dinner is heavy on protein and fat, make sure that you at least attempt to add in some vitamins and nutrients. These, combined with your very own collagen protein bone broth, are going to make for a powerful nutritious choice that you won’t want to pass up!
9. Ask for a smaller plate
As in, literal size. This works best if you know the host well or you are the one hosting. If you use a smaller plate, the odds are that most people won’t even notice. If they do, you can always make light of the situation or simply explain the reason for portioning. Whatever makes you feel most comfortable. This way, you still get to enjoy a little bit of everything! Perhaps others may follow suit, and you’ll start a new trend!
10. Don’t go for seconds
This might be hard for the first 5 minutes, but after those have passed, you’ll be glad you did it! You probably don’t want that second plate of food as much as you think you do, and this just means that you have more space for pie!
How to stay healthy on Thanksgiving
There’s so much pressure around the holidays when it comes to the meal. If you feel that pressure, just take a moment to remember what the holiday is really about. Be mindful of what you’re eating, and eat only what you want to eat. The holidays should be a treat for you, after all.
Another thing to remember is that most of us snack when we’re bored. If you feel the urge, resist as long as possible! Or eat healthy snacks intentionally. This will curb the boredom pretty quickly and give you some extra munchy nutrients.
Lastly, don’t be afraid to let people know where you stand. A lot of anxiety is centered on whether people will notice that you’re taking steps to be healthy or that they’ll make fun of you for doing so. Take a moment to alert people to your plan on eating and let them know. It gets it out into the open, frees up that anxiety, and allows others to do the same.
Thanksgiving is a holiday filled with delicious food and quality time spent with loved ones. By focusing on these tips, you’ll be able to keep it as focused on this as possible, and that makes for a healthy and satisfying Thanksgiving!