When Thanksgiving rolls around, it’s tempting to splurge on all of that buttery, delicious, calorie-laden goodness. But Thanksgiving doesn’t have to sabotage your health. Here are six tips to indulge in your Thanksgiving feast without the guilt, and help you savor the things that mean the most.
Believe it or not, you can modify your favorite Thanksgiving recipes without sacrificing flavor. Rub your bird with healthy olive oil instead of fatty butter, and use spices to enhance flavor. Baste the turkey with fat-free chicken broth and use that as the base for gravy. Reduce the amount of butter in mashed potatoes, and add yogurt or fat-free sour cream to make them creamier. Substitute fruit purees to reduce the amount of sugar in apple and pumpkin pies, and include fresh fruit and nuts on the dessert table. These simple, flavorful modifications could add up to big savings when it comes to calories.
The only thing that should be stuffed at the Thanksgiving table is the turkey—not the dinner guests. Embrace the bounty before you with your eyes, not your stomach, by selecting reasonably sized portions of the foods you’ve been waiting for all year long, and then skip going back for seconds. Bonus: more leftovers (and less cooking) the next day, plus room for dessert.
Savor Every Bite
Instead of gobbling up your Thanksgiving feast, savor the magic of the moment and the time spent with family and friends. Taste each forkful, and put your fork down between bites. Save room for the foods you love the most, and spread the meal out over the course of the afternoon, rather than consuming six hours worth of preparation in 20 minutes.
Focus on Family and Friends
Relish the company at the table as much as you enjoy the food on it. Thanksgiving is about more than the bounty you can eat—it’s also time to savor relationships with family and friends, especially if you only see some relatives during the holidays.
Walk It Off
That Thanksgiving nap you’re looking forward to? Consider replacing it with a brisk stroll in the fresh air, and enjoy dessert later. Gather the family after dinner and take a walk together, recounting memories of Thanksgivings past and all the things you are grateful for—like delicious food, friends and family, and good health.
After all, friends, family and good health are something to truly be thankful for.