The American Council on Fitness estimates that the average person consumes around 3,000 calories on Thanksgiving and 229 grams of fat. Yikes! It doesn’t have to be that way. The best defense is a good offense – prevention! Here are a few tips to incorporate into your Thanksgiving holiday.
Get Moving – Exercising before the big meal will help jump-start your metabolism and declare that you are committed to your health goals. It will set the stage for good choices later. So, go for a walk or run to enjoy some pre-festivities alone time, or grab your favorite second cousin to catch up. For something a bit more competitive, round up a group of family or friends and hit the backyard for a game of football. Don’t have a lot of time? Check out this HIIT round of exercises from Vicki Heath that anyone can do in about fifteen minutes and burns a ton of calories–https://youtu.be/tEB9HekVNNM
Go Easy on the Appetizers – You can have cheese and crackers anytime. Save your appetite for the main meal.
Use a Smaller Plate– Research shows you can cut up to 25% extra calories this way.
Eat Plenty of Vegetables – Before filling your plate with turkey and stuffing, fill two-thirds of your plate with a rainbow of vegetables. Healthy holiday veggies will fill you up and keep you from indulging in unhealthy food. You can find some great recipes here: Recipes
Drink Lots of Water – Drink plenty of water before and during your meal. Water will help your stomach stay full and keep you from overeating. Plus, you won’t pack on any of the additional calories soft drinks and other beverages can add to your meal.
Don’t Deny Yourself Dessert– There are no bad foods! Just try to enjoy them in moderation. A recent study showed that we are just as satisfied with a smaller piece of pie. Check out Faux Fried Apple Pie.
Leave the Dinner Table After Eating – When you’re finished eating, leave the table. Sounds simple, but it will help you from being tempted to snack on leftovers or get more just because others are still eating. Head to another room to chat and spend time with your family.
Lisa is the Chief Operating Officer for First Place 4 Health. She is author of Healthy Happy Cooking released in December 2016, a speaker, FP4H group leader and cooks at Spa Week and Wellness Weeks. Lisa also provided recipes for 14 First Place 4 Health Bible studies.