Healthy Alternatives to Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is widely known for its strong emphasis on food. While Thanksgiving is absolutely a time of celebration, it can also cause havoc on diets and healthy eating. One of the main keys to Thanksgiving dinner is selecting the correct foods with the correct portion sizes. In order to assist in this, consider drinking a glass of water prior to the Thanksgiving meal. Focus on typical healthy eating serving sizes.

The first aspect that must be addressed is the appetizers. For this course, try to eat mainly vegetables. Avoid higher calorie options that have a large number of carbohydrates. When it comes to the main meal, try to opt for white meat turkey as opposed to dark meat. Try to fill your plate with mostly vegetables. However, it is important to take a moment and think about how the vegetables were prepared. While green beans mixed with almonds would be a healthy choice, candied sweet potatoes would not be an optimum one. Limit the use of gravy if at all possible. Also, opt for fresh cranberry sauce as opposed to canned jellied cranberry sauce. There is much larger sugar content in canned cranberry sauce. Some carbohydrates are necessary in order to enjoy you Thanksgiving meal but don’t double up on the carbohydrates. Try to have either mashed potatoes or stuffing instead of both. This aspect alone will decrease the calorie consumption.

When it comes to dessert, try to limit yourself to one dessert and one dessert only. An easy way to eliminate some of the calories in dessert is to not eat the crust on pie or to opt not to top it with ice cream. Either way you are decreasing the number of possible calories that may be consumed. Another important aspect to remember is alcohol and soda consumption. Liquid calories can accumulate very rapidly. So while you may eat healthy during the actual meal, the liquid calories that are consumed can nullify your hard work.

When cooking Thanksgiving dinner, it is important to try to decrease the amount of sugar used in the preparation of foods. When sugar can be substituted by something else, it is important to do so in order to decrease the overall calorie count in the dish. Simple changes such as opting to make fresh cranberry sauce as opposed to using canned can make a difference as well. Also, when preparing items such as potatoes and stuffing, by limiting the amount of butter and what type of milk is utilized in the preparation of these dishes can also drastically affect the calories and overall healthiness of the dish.

There are plenty of healthy alternatives that allow individuals to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving meal without blowing their diets or work out regimens. Small changes can ultimately make big differences in the end.

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