This Thanksgiving Don’t Get More Stuffed Than The Turkey
After our Thanksgiving meal, many of us end up loosening that belt buckle and lazing on the couch, feeling more stuffed than the turkey.
The average American will consume a hefty 3,000 calories on Thanksgiving -- for dinner alone. Drinks, dessert, and appetizers can bring the total calorie count to 4,500, according to the Calorie Control Council. The most delicious Thanksgiving dishes -- mas, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, stuffing, and pecan pie -- are loaded with sugar or fat or both. Hunter Lewis, editor of Cooking Light magazine, says we should appreciate the spirit of Thanksgiving more than the food. He says, "Be engaged at the table and be grateful and thankful, and while we should not feel guilty about the food, don’t let one day of feasting turn into five days.”
There are many healthy options at the table for Thanksgiving. Here's how to build a healthy plate and cut some calories, fat, and sugar, so you can enjoy the holiday without getting more stuffed than the turkey.
Load on non-starchy vegetables such as green beans, carrots, brussel sprouts, string beans and salad. If you are hosting the dinner, prepare several healthy vegetable choices without added sauces and butter.
Turkey is relatively low in calories and fat. Skinless white meat is your best bet, just go easy on the gravy.
When there is not much space left on the plate, we can add starches such as stuffing or mashed potatoes. They should fill up less than a quarter of your plate.
The favorite part of the meal for many people, sweets and baked good can sabotage all your efforts to have a healthy Thanksgiving meal. Just have a taste or small slice but keep it under control
Do your best to limit appetizers, bread, sauces and gravies...anything above and beyond the main course.
Eat foods that you love and that aren't available at other times of the year, like homemade cranberry sauce, specialty sides, and pumpkin pie, and forgo everyday foods like chips, rolls, and mashed potatoes.
Hard liquor, beer or wine can all add up to extra calories. Have a glass of water between drinks and limit alcohol to no more than two drinks.
Savor every bite and sip. Enjoy your food by chewing slowly and put down your fork between bites. Go ahead, load up your plate, but forego the seconds.