Keeping A Healthy Holiday Balance

Keeping A Healthy Holiday Balance.

via Keeping A Healthy Holiday Balance.

 

Thanksgiving evokes memories of spending time with friends, family, and home-cooked meals. Just thinking about how to maintain healthy eating habits at Thanksgiving is enough to throw most of us into a panic. It is estimated that a typical Thanksgiving meal contains between

4,000 to 7,000 calories, which is up to more than three times the number of calories that the average adult should consume daily.

Try these helpful tips so that you can have a healthier Thanksgiving:

1. Don’t fast before you feast: Don’t skip lunch before sitting down for Thanksgiving dinner, this practice actually causes you to eat too much. Instead, try to have a light meal three to four hours before sitting down for dinner.

2. Eat with fewer people: Whether you realize it or not, you tend to down more for dinner as the size of your company increases. Eating with just one other person increases the amount of food you consume by a third.

3. Downsize the dining ware: Eating from smaller plates and taking food from smaller serving bowls helps to limit the amount of food you eat.

4. Eat slowly: Don’t rely on your body to tell you when you’re full. It takes about 20 minutes for your stomach to digest the first bites of food and the small intestine to absorb the nutrients into your blood before you finally start to feel satisfied. This means if you keep eating while waiting for your body to hit the brakes, you will keep eating for 20 minutes too long. If you’re unsure if you’ve eaten enough, wait 20 minutes to see if the hunger returns.

5. Don’t eat the dark meat: Eat white meat instead of dark meat,and you’ll get the same amount of protein but only half as much saturated and total fat. 

6. Eat your fruits and vegetables: Fruits and veggies have half the calories as fatty foods. High fiber and water content in fruits and vegetables lowers cholesterol levels and helps to fill you up without weighing you down in calories. So trade in your chip-and dip appetizer for a platter of sliced fruits and vegetables. Add extra celery and onions to your stuffing. And use apple sauce in your rolls recipe instead of oil.

7. Remove fat and calories: By refrigerating your gravy or soups before dinner, the fat will harden and rise to the top. Simply remove this congealed fat with a spoon. If you’re pressed for time, drop some ice cubes inside the broth or turkey drippings. The fat will solidify around the cubes, which you can remove promptly before they melt. This extra effort is worthwhile since every tablespoon of fat you remove from gravy or pan juice subtracts about 120 calories and 13 grams of fat.

 8. Pick pumpkin, not pecan: And for dessert, serving pumpkin pie rather than pecan pie can easily save you 100 to 200 calories. Hold off on a dollop of whipped cream, and you’ve just saved another 25 calories.

9. Drink water: Drinking water throughout the day helps to keep you hydrated and feeling full. Drinks like soda and alcohol beverages can add 150-350 calories per drink.

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