With Thanksgiving right around the corner, most people are dreaming of their favorite holiday meals...tofu, broccoli, and celery. And after that delicious meal? The Thanksgiving half-marathon!
If that scenario sounded crazy to you, you're not alone.
Thanksgiving is a time of indulgence, not restriction. But, that doesn't mean that you can't enjoy a healthy Thanksgiving either.
Read on to discover 5 tips for a balanced Thanksgiving holiday!
1. Don't Skip Breakfast
For many, eating healthier is equated with eating less. Out of fear that they may overindulge at dinner, people may skip meals or snacks earlier in the day to save room.
In reality, this practice may promote binge-eating behaviors and an unhealthy relationship with food.
The more you hyper focus on the Thanksgiving dinner, the more power you give it. Plus, how can you enjoy Thanksgiving dinner if you're hungry all day?
The best course of action for Thanksgiving day is to eat breakfast and all of your meals as normal. When dinner comes, you'll feel no desire to binge and will be able to listen to your fullness cues.
2. Exercise Lightly
If a Thanksgiving 5k is a family tradition, more power to you. However, incorporating light exercise on Thanksgiving is a great way to feel your best.
Going on a walk with your family members after dinner can make you feel strong and relieve any discomfort from a bloated stomach. Plus, this is a Thanksgiving activity that even Grandma can enjoy!
3. Make Small Changes
While cutting out your favorite meals is a recipe for disaster and can leave you feeling dissatisfied, you can make small swaps in your ingredients that you likely won't notice.
Using greek yogurt in place of heavy cream or opting for low-sodium chicken broth is a way to save calories while not sacrificing taste.
4. Be Mindful
We've all been in a situation where we sit down to watch TV with a bag of chips and before we know it, the bag is empty. Eating while distracted can lead to overeating and feeling way too full.
Focus on being mindful during your meal of how your body feels. Eat to be happy and full but don't eat without savoring each bite!
5. Add, Don't Subtract
Instead of restricting yourself from dessert or your favorite Thanksgiving dishes, think about what healthy foods you can add to your plate.
Maybe you want to prioritize eating more protein so you have a bigger helping of Turkey. Maybe adding vegetables to your plate first will help you eat more vegetables.
Remember, food is fuel!
A Healthy Thanksgiving Is Possible
Don't let Thanksgiving become all about the food. Thanksgiving is about family, traditions, and maybe a little bit about the food too.
Having a healthy Thanksgiving is truly possible as long as you set realistic expectations for yourself and give yourself grace.
After all, it's just one day!