Five Ways to Make This Thanksgiving a Healthy One

Thanksgiving is notorious for ruining diets and expanding waistlines. According to, there are over 46 million turkeys eaten in the United States each Thanksgiving. That’s almost two pounds of turkey and 4,500 calories per meal, per person, each Thanksgiving. What can you do? The food is too delicious to turn down, there’s always more to eat and it’s practically a tradition to stuff yourself. Don’t worry, daunting though it may seem, there’s actually a lot you can do to make your Thanksgiving a healthy one.

Thanksgiving a Healthy

First, you can utilize some healthy, alternative food options. For example, you can try some lemon-maple squash instead of a more traditional dish that uses straight white sugar. Or, you could opt for gluten-free stuffing and gravy to improve the overall healthiness of your meal. The are many ways to make every item you serve a little healthier, so use your imagination.

Second, portion control. This might be the hardest item on this list, but stopping yourself from going back for another helping of stuffing and turkey (or another drink) is key to making sure your weight doesn’t suffer this Thanksgiving. Before you load your plate to the ceiling with delicious food, consider eating a little less. You’ll feel a lot healthier.

Third, eat healthy meals before dinner. If you starve yourself before the big meal, the odds of you controlling yourself during the meal plummet. Make sure to eat a healthy breakfast and lunch prior to dinner. That way, you’ll have a healthy appetite, as opposed to a “stuff-my-face-til-I-can’t-breathe” appetite.

Fourth, exercise during the holidays. Yes, it will take a bit of discipline, but the winning formula to prevent weight gain is simple: More calories out than in. If you can burn off the calories that you’ll be consuming during the holidays, then you won’t experience any weight gain and you’ll feel healthier. Plus, going running for 30 minutes is a great way to get out of the house and avoid talking to any unsettling relatives.

Fifth, and finally, don’t stop. Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to start living a healthier life all the time. After the final dish has been served and your stomach feels like it might burst, take a second to think about your health care situation. Are you covered? If you’re not, now is the time to enroll. The enrollment window is open until December 15, 2017. You won’t be turned away because of pre-existing health conditions or because you ate way too much over Thanksgiving, so don’t wait. See what plans are available to you.

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