Looking to enjoy a healthy Thanksgiving feast and holiday season? Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate with family and friends, but it can also be a challenge for keeping up with certain health goals. How can you enjoy the festive food without overindulging or feeling guilty? The San Diego Cardiac Vein and Laser Center shares some tips to help you have a healthy and happy holiday season.
Choose a healthy meat.
If you want to choose a healthy meat for Thanksgiving, you can go for either chicken or turkey, as long as you stick to the white meat. Both poultry options provide about 26 g of protein per 3 oz serving, based on USDA data, which is a great amount of protein. The only difference is that chicken breast has a bit more fat, with 3 g compared to turkey’s 2 g per serving.
Make a healthy side dish.
There are many options for delicious and nutritious dishes. You can make vegetable-based sides, such as sweet potato mash, butternut squash bake, or Brussels sprouts with maple and bacon. You can also add some freshness and variety with salads that use seasonal ingredients, or a pumpkin hummus that is rich in protein and flavor. There are a multitude of healthy recipes from all over the world just a quick internet search away.
Make healthier choices all Thanksgiving day
- Start your day with a protein-rich breakfast to keep you full and energized.
- Bring your own dish to the Thanksgiving feast, so you can control the ingredients and portions.
- Fill half of your plate with vegetables and fruits, and limit the starchy and sugary foods.
- Eat the foods that are most nutritious and satisfying first, and leave the less healthy ones for later or skip them altogether.
- Pay attention to your hunger and fullness cues, and eat slowly and mindfully.
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day to stay hydrated and prevent overeating.
- Avoid drinking alcohol on an empty stomach, as it can impair your judgment and increase your appetite.
Ten more impactful tips for a healthy holiday season
If you want to enjoy the holiday season without compromising your health, here are some tips to follow.
First, you can run or walk a turkey trot with your family or friends. This is a fun way to burn some calories and support a good cause.
Second, lend a hand where you can. Volunteer at or donate to a food bank, or help out at a shelter. This can help make you feel good while doing some good.
Third, you can take a hike in nature and enjoy the fresh air and scenery. This is a great exercise that can improve your mood and lower your stress levels.
Fourth, lighten up a bit and choose less fat, light salt options when preparing or eating your meals. You can still enjoy your favorite dishes but with less guilt and more nutrition.
Fifth, you can play outdoor games with your kids, pets, friends, or neighbors. You can toss a frisbee, kick a ball, or jump rope, which will keep you active and entertained.
Sixth, you can walk it off after your meals. Instead of sitting on the couch or taking a nap, you can go for a brisk walk around the block or the park. This will help you digest your food and prevent weight gain.
Seventh, skip the seconds and limit yourself to one serving of each dish. You don’t have to eat everything on the table or finish your plate. You can save some leftovers for later or share them with others.
Eighth, share your gratitude and express your appreciation for the people and things in your life. You can write thank-you notes, make phone calls, or say it in person. Gratitude will boost your happiness and strengthen your relationships.
Happy Thanksgiving from the San Diego Cardiac, Vein & Laser Treatment Center
As the year comes to an end, the San Diego Cardiac, Vein & Laser Treatment Center wants to express our gratitude to all of you, our valued clients, for your continued trust and support. You are the reason we strive to deliver the best quality treatments and services. Thank you for being part of our success story. We wish you a happy Thanksgiving and a healthy holiday season.