Make Thanksgiving happy and healthy this year with our top tips for a guilt-free holiday.
1. Take a deep breath.
Between cleaning your house, preparing the holiday meal and dealing with family, Thanksgiving can quickly go from celebratory to stressful. Here a few ways to keep stress at a minimum:
- Enlist a family member or guest to help with food prep, or divide your list among your guests and ask everyone to bring a dish.
- Practice deep breathing. Taking deep breaths when you get stressed out will help lower your heart rate and will trigger your body’s natural relaxation response.
- Take regular breaks from preparing dinner to chat with friends and family or simply rest your feet.
2. Make time for a turkey trot.
Get some exercise earlier in the day, before you sit down at the dinner table. A brisk 30-minute walk can burn between 100-200 calories and help get you on the right side of the day’s calorie count.
3. Avoid overconsumption.
Before you begin, scan the table and decide what looks best, then fill your plate with reasonable-sized portions of those foods. Try to avoid second helpings.
Eating a small, healthy breakfast – like whole-grain cereal or whole-wheat toast – can also help curb your appetite before dinner and help you feel fuller faster.
4. Enjoy yourself
Think about your health this holiday, but remember, it’s just one day. If you do go for that second slice of pumpkin pie or extra helping of stuffing, it’s not the end of the world. Enjoy yourself and the company of friends and family on Thanksgiving, while resolving to make healthy choices part of your year-round lifestyle.
- Looking for healthy recipe ideas? Check out our list, broken down by dietary considerations and food category.
- Learn more about managing your stress, including tips on how to meditate and relax.