A report by Health Management Resources showed that the typical Thanksgiving meal is a whopping 7100 calories! That’s over 3 day’s worth of calories in one meal. While exercise can help in burning off those extra calories, it will take much more than a few miles to shed all of those calories.
Instead, look for ways to cut back on the amount of calories you consume during Thanksgiving day. By knowing what to keep out of your hands and off your plate, Thanksgiving can be a day full of happy, social family bonding, rather than a day full of excess calories and guilt. Use these basic tips to get you started in becoming conscious of what you consume during the traditional holiday meal.
1. Avoid the appetizers: Pre-meal snacks tend to be loaded with fat and calories. Who needs an extra 100-200 calories worth of cheese cubes or fat-loaded ranch dressing, when delicious, real dressing (stuffing) is on its way? Save your appetite and figure for the main meal. The food will most likely be prepared with time and care and be far more tasty than appetizers quickly taken out of a box or tub and thrown onto a plate (something you can do anytime of the year). If you really need something to knock the edge off your hunger, opt for the raw veggies on the vegetable tray, but skip the fat-loaded dressing.
2. Pass on the Cass.: Stay away from casseroles. Creamy casseroles are often filled with unneeded fat. For instance, take a look at green bean casserole. This popular dish typically contains around 10 grams of fat, where as freshly steamed green beans, which taste just as good, if not better, are virtually fat free. If your favorite Aunt Mary insists on bringing the green bean casserole every year, make an additional dish of steamed green beans simply seasoned with olive oil, lemon, S&P, or try roasting some vegetables in the oven for a real treat.
3. Go light over dark– If you’re a turkey eater, choose white meat over dark. White meat contains around 30 less calories per serving and half the fat of dark meat.
4. Keep on passing the bread: When the bread basket is passed to you, just keep on passing it. Stuffing is already filled with bread, so why reach for an unseasoned, substandard plain roll? Compared to the rest of the meal, the rolls are often inferior and will add as much as 200 extra calories to your plate. Save them for sandwich making later on, and keep your appetite for what’s hot on the table.
5. Stop Before Your Full: This is probably one of the hardest tips to utilize. A majority of Americans over indulge on Thanksgiving, but if you’re looking to keep your slim physique, it’s important to listen to your body when it tells you it’s full. Try to avoid overloading your plate by serving yourself small portions, and refrain from going back for seconds. Fill at least half your plate with vegetables, and limit the amount of gravy you slather over your food. Pause during the middle of your meal and take a moment to tune in with your body and determine if it’s really still hungry. Stopping before your full will even allow you to indulge in a small piece of dessert and enjoy it to its fullest extent.
6. Eat three meals: Don’t skip breakfast in order to make up for extra calories you intend to consume later on in the day. Instead of compensating, this will most likely cause you to binge on more food than you planned on consuming. Instead, start your day off with a healthy, fiber-loaded breakfast, such as a bowl of oatmeal, an apple, and a few walnuts, which will leave you from being ravished before the main meal. This will also help you to avoid quickly shoveling down a plate of food, and will allow you to take your time, listen to your body’s hunger levels, and really savor the food as you eat.