How to save 1,000 calories this Thanksgiving – and still enjoy dessert
These tips will help you eat more mindfully and cut down on Thanksgiving calories.
LOS ANGELES – A traditional Thanksgiving feast can add up to thousands of calories. While it’s okay to indulge a bit around the holidays, there are ways to reduce the number of calories consumed. These tips from PIH Health will help you cut down on your Thanksgiving calories –and still enjoy dessert and alcoholic drinks.
Alcoholic drinks: An average alcoholic drink is over 100 calories. Have a glass of water or seltzer between drinks and you’ll save calories. You’ll also stay hydrated and will be less likely to experience a hangover the next day. Approximate calorie savings (two glasses of wine): 250
Turkey: Eat roasted turkey without the skin instead of fried turkey with the skin. You’ll still get all the turkey goodness with less fat and calories. Approximate calorie savings: 125
Veggies: Want to save your calories for something truly indulgent? Skip the green bean casserole and other creamy veggie dishes and have steamed veggies instead. Approximate calorie savings: 150
Potatoes: Unless mashed potatoes are something you wait all year to enjoy, have a baked sweet potato with a sprinkle of cinnamon instead. Approximate calorie savings: 175
Stuffing: This side dish can be loaded with carbs and fat. To lighten it up, swap in wild rice for half of the bread stuffing. You’ll get some healthy carbs which will lower the calorie count. Approximate calorie savings: 100
Pie: Perhaps the most popular Thanksgiving dishes appear on the dessert table – the pies! Choose pumpkin over pecan pie and you’ll still enjoy the tastes of the season with fewer calories. Approximate calorie savings: 250
Here are a few more tips for eating more mindfully this holiday from PIH Health Clinical Nutrition Manager Cortney Kaller:
- Don’t arrive hungry. If you arrive with an empty stomach, you’re less likely to make good food decisions. Try a high-protein snack before you arrive.
- Check out the menu. Before you take a serving, take a look at what is being offered and decide which indulgences you truly must have. Skip foods you can eat anytime and take small portions of the ones you really want. Then savor them slowly.
- Bring a dish. Offer to bring a dish or two and make it something healthy. This way you’ll know just where to go when you need to fill your plate with something nourishing and less fattening.
- Sit strategically. Find a seat away from the snack foods if you can’t stop snacking. That way, you’ll have to make a conscious decision to get up if you want to indulge.
These tips are for educational purposes only and not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult your healthcare provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for your own situation, or if you have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan.