It's tempting to get caught up in the grand traditions of Thanksgiving as the holiday season draws near. However, you don't have to compromise your fitness goals in order to have a day of pleasure. This post will show you how to have a joyous Thanksgiving while still staying on track with your fitness goals.
Thanksgiving Day 2023 in the United States is a holiday on the fourth Thursday of November. The day after is also known as Black Friday. This year, Thanksgiving will fall on Thursday, November 23. A roast turkey, stuffing, potatoes, vegetables, cranberry sauce, gravy, and pumpkin pie are traditionally offered to friends and relatives on Thanksgiving.
Preparing for Thanksgiving can be overwhelming, but setting realistic goals can help you stay on track and ready. Here are some checklists to help you prepare for Thanksgiving:
- To keep organized, make a week-by-week, day-by-day plan.
- Make sure you have all of the necessary cookware and kitchen tools.
- Prepare to begin thawing your turkey ahead of time.
- If necessary, learn how to cook your turkey without a roasting pan.
- To save time, make and freeze the gravy ahead of time.
- Make the cranberry sauce to add a tasty touch to your dinner.
- To save time on the big day, make and freeze mashed potatoes.
- Plan your supper menu to ensure a well-balanced and tasty spread.
- Assess your culinary skills and prepare recipes accordingly.
- Make a guest list to ensure that you have enough seating and food for everyone.
Thanksgiving Day Healthy Tips
It's the most challenging time of year to eat responsibly. A lot of people want to enjoy their Thanksgiving without feeling bloated or sick afterwards. The good news is that you can eat all of your favorite foods while still meeting your health goals. You can enjoy the Thanksgiving celebrations with certain planning and preparation.
Start with a nutritious breakfast
A well-balanced breakfast can give you long-lasting energy and keep you full for a long time. A decent breakfast is often high in fiber, protein, healthy fats, and vitamins. Some marketed breakfast foods contain a lot of sugar, refined carbohydrates, and preservatives. Why not try some nutrient-dense, fresh choices instead and have the energy for the Thanksgiving celebration?
Here are some healthy foods you can include in your breakfast:
- Greek Yogurt
- Whole Grain Toast
- Fresh Fruit
- Nut Butter
- Cottage Cheese
- Chia Seeds
- Whole Grain Cereal
- Breakfast Burrito
- Lean Breakfast Meats
- Green Smoothie
- Overnight Oats
- Whole Grain Pancakes or Waffles
- Veggie Omelette
- Smoked Salmon
- Tofu Scramble
- Avocado Toast
Portion control and mindful eating
Portion control is an essential part of eating a well-rounded diet. It is the act of being aware of the amount of food you consume and changing it based on its nutritional worth and the goals of your meal plan.
Here are some tips to measure and control portion size:
- Use a smaller plate. Smaller dishes can help control portion sizes and prevent overeating. People often feel equally satisfied with smaller meals.
- Measure the portion using the plate:
- Vegetables/salad: Half
- High-quality protein: Quarter (meat, fish, tofu, etc.)
- Complex carbs: Quarter (whole grains, starchy veggies)
- High-fat foods: Half a tablespoon
This is simply an outline; you can adapt it to your own demands. Active adults may require more. To prevent consuming calorie-dense foods, prioritize vegetables.
- Drink a glass of water before meals. Drinking a glass of water up to 30 minutes before a meal can naturally help with portion control. Drinking enough water will help you feel less hungry. You can differentiate between hunger and thirst better if you are properly hydrated.
Healthy food alternatives
With little to no difference in flavor, these healthy substitutes can help you reduce sodium, sugar, saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol. Even when dining out, smart adjustments can help you maintain a balanced diet.
Here are some alternatives you can try in your recipe for Thanksgiving:
- Use fat-free or low-fat milk instead of whole milk.
- Replace heavy cream with evaporated skim milk or a mix of low-fat yogurt and low-fat cottage cheese.
- Swap sour cream with low-fat cottage cheese or fat-free sour cream.
- Substitute cream cheese with a blend of soft margarine and dry, unsalted, low-fat cottage cheese.
- Use soft margarine or liquid vegetable oil instead of butter.
- Replace unsweetened baking chocolate with unsweetened cocoa powder or carob powder, along with vegetable oil.
- Opt for baked tortilla chips over fried ones.
- Choose pretzels or low-fat potato chips over regular potato or corn chips.
- Go for fat-free or low-fat cookies, crackers, and baked goods.
- Select baked goods made with unsaturated oil or soft margarines, egg whites or egg substitutes, and fat-free milk.
- Enjoy frozen fruit bars instead of ice cream bars.
- Opt for pudding made with fat-free or low-fat milk instead of whole milk.
- Choose sherbet, ice milk, or frozen, fat-free or low-fat yogurt over regular ice cream.
- Pick a bagel or toast instead of a doughnut.
Fitness Activity on Thanksgiving
During a holiday weekend, you may be so preoccupied with cooking, socializing with your relatives, and other tasks that you might neglect your workout regimen for a few days. Do not let this happen. Make Thanksgiving an active day.
- Turkey Trot Fun Run: Participate in or host a local Turkey Trot race with your family and friends. It's a great way to get some exercise before your main meal.
- Touch Football: Gather your friends and family for a casual game of touch football in your backyard or a local park. Many families make it a Thanksgiving tradition.
- Scavenger Hunt: Make a Thanksgiving scavenger hunt with clues and riddles leading to hidden sweets or small rewards. This activity will get everyone up and moving.
- Nature Hike: Take advantage of the cool autumn air by going on a nature hike. To savor all the beauty of the season, visit a nearby path, forest, or natural reserve.
- Dance Party: Play some cheerful music and throw a Thanksgiving dance party in your living room or outside. Dancing is an excellent method to burn calories while having fun with family and friends.
Thanksgiving is more than a tradition; it is a special holiday to spend time with family and friends and to have fun. Keep the spirit of gratitude alive by being mindful of your actions and how you rejoice.
Embrace the joyful season and healthy celebration this Thanksgiving 2023 in a way that will nurture your mental and physical health. Happy Thanksgiving Day!
- What are typical Thanksgiving foods?
Common Thanksgiving foods include roast turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, gravy, and pumpkin pie.
- Is Black Friday related to Thanksgiving?
Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, is associated with holiday shopping sales and is one of the busiest shopping days of the year.
- Are there vegetarian or vegan Thanksgiving options?
Yes, many people offer vegetarian or vegan alternatives to traditional Thanksgiving dishes, such as tofu turkey or plant-based sides.
- What's the purpose of the Thanksgiving parade, like the Macy's Parade?
Thanksgiving parades, like Macy's Parade in New York City, are festive events featuring giant balloons, floats, and performances. They kick off the holiday season and provide entertainment for spectators.
- Can you celebrate Thanksgiving without a traditional meal?
Yes, Thanksgiving is about gratitude, so you can celebrate in various ways, such as by volunteering, spending time with loved ones, or reflecting on what you're thankful for.