Tips to enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday without overindulging
Fall is in the air and Thanksgiving is around the corner. The long weekend for Thanksgiving is a time for family get-togethers and can mean multiple turkey dinners for some. Holidays are the hardest time of year to eat healthily. The following healthy Thanksgiving tips will help you enjoy your meal(s) without increasing your waistline or throwing you off course in achieving your health goals.
- Stay active– Start your healthy Thanksgiving Day by getting active. The fall colours in the NCR are beautiful this time of year. Use the early morning solitude to go on a brisk walk, run or cycle to admire the outdoor colours.
- Eat breakfast– Start your day off with a healthy and balanced breakfast. Saving up calories for the big meal rarely works. Most of the time we end up overindulging and our bodies have a harder time digesting the heavy meal.
- Load up on veggies– Before you reach for the turkey, stuffing and gravy, serve yourself a rainbow of vegetables first. Fall vegetables are plentiful in October. They are also packed with nutrients and fibre-filing goodness.
- Stay hydrated– Drink plenty of water before, during and after your meal. A large salty meal can leave you thirsty and more inclined to try and quench your thirst with unnecessary sugary or alcoholic beverages.
- Have your cake– There is no need to avoid dessert altogether during the holidays. If you’ve eaten a balanced meal and are still craving some pumpkin pie, indulge yourself with a small slice. If you are still craving some sugar, eat some fruit to satisfy your sweet tooth with a healthy compromise.
- Leave the dinner table– Thanksgiving dinner is a time when family and friends make time to be together. Lingering at the table once everyone has finished their meal provides an opportunity to graze or snack on leftovers. Move the dinner party into another room away from food to spend time chatting and catching up.
- Get moving– After dinner (and before the turkey coma sets in) suggest everyone go outside for some fresh air. A neighbourhood stroll or some family fun outdoor games are a wonderful way for everyone to enjoy the holiday together!
After feasting is over, be sure that you’re returning to a home well-stocked with healthy foods for the day after Thanksgiving. Consider having a bowl of fresh fruit in the kitchen, fresh salad ingredients in the fridge for lunch, and homemade soups in the freezer. Be sure to make healthy use of leftovers. Top your salad, for example, with strips of roasted, skinless turkey breast.
Mother Nature has been kind to Ottawa this fall. The temperatures have stayed warm and fall is gearing up to be colorful in the NCR. Don’t forget to keep moving this holiday weekend. Try and stick to your regular exercise routine, or if guests are in town, plan something active for all of you during the long weekend. This Thanksgiving weekend, be sure to take advantage of the outdoor colours so easily accessible.
Don’t beat yourself up if you overdo it on turkey and pie this year- Thanksgiving dinner has defeated us all at one time or another. The great news is Tuesday is the beginning of a new week where you can easily get back on track and return to your healthy routines. For more information about CURAVITA and our team of MSK experts visit our website.
Have a healthy Thanksgiving!