While Thanksgiving just might be the most delicious holiday, it can also be a nightmare for those of us who are trying to live a healthier lifestyle, one meal at a time. Thanksgiving kicks off the holiday season, and it can be a slippery slope from having just one more sliver of pumpkin pie to polishing off an entire sleeve of holiday Oreos.
De Silva says that the best way to avoid gorging on the big day is to start enjoying Thanksgiving indulgences before Turkey Day. Toast some pumpkin seeds, or make a green bean casserole or a special pumpkin soup. That way, come Thanksgiving dinner, you won’t be craving all those once-a-year foods as badly.
Gomes says that it’s important to “think about where you’ll be, who you’ll be with, and what foods will be available” before dinner so that you can make a game plan and stay focused on health. Likewise, it’s important to allow yourself little indulgences, says Gomes. Decide ahead of time which foods are special to you and which are just filling. If you adore pumpkin pie but don’t really go in for cranberry sauce, there’s no need to force yourself to eat a little of everything. Save your calories for the good stuff so you don’t feel deprived.
“It’s not a good idea to arrive at a party famished,” Gomes says. You’re more likely to overeat and to choose high-calorie foods if you’re starving. Why not have an apple or some yogurt before you go so you can make clearheaded choices?
Gomes says that stress often causes mindless overeating, so if you’re tasked with preparing the meal, make sure you’ve got a game plan so you’re not shoveling in handfuls of cheese cubes while worrying about your turkey timer and that missing can of cranberry sauce. itional, calorie-heavy fare.
Look, big dinners with extended family make even the best of us long for a cocktail, but remember, alcohol is a major source of empty calories. A couple of drinks before dinner can also lower your inhibitions and make you lose sight of your diet goals.
De Silva says that drinking a little warm, spiced green tea with cinnamon, cardamom, and ginger before dinner can aid digestion and help fill you up, making you less likely to overeat.
One of the most important keys to avoiding self-sabotage on Thanksgiving Day is to focus on enjoying the holiday with friends and family rather than food, says De Silva. Treasure conversations, linger over coffee, and be grateful for the gift of sharing a special day with loved ones