Tips for a Healthier Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, it is somewhat important for me to express my gratitude. I am so thankful for loving what I do for a living, which is helping people learn how to live and maintain a healthier lifestyle.

In my true Health Coach fashion, I must give tips on how to make your holiday a healthy one, too, rather than a day of gluttony and an ensuing food-hangover. These are 8 great tips on how to have a great Thanksgiving that’s health-conscious:

1. Start your day with exercise. There are a number of local 5k turkey trots on Thanksgiving Day. You could also enjoy a walk or bike ride with your family. Find a way to start your day with at least 30 minutes of activity.

2. Eat breakfast after your workout. Too many people skip breakfast and eat a huge turkey dinner but if you eat breakfast and healthy snacks throughout the day you will be less likely to overeat at dinner time.

3. Drink a lot of water throughout the day. Even if you choose to consume alcohol, pair it with water. This will keep you from overeating due to dehydration.

4. Provide your family and friends with healthy snacks. If you are hosting, you could put these out while you are finishing meal preparation. If you are visiting, bring healthy snacks to share or a healthy side dish.

5. Slow it down! Take your time while eating your dinner. Load up on veggies first, and your protein (turkey) and then take a small amount of the potatoes and casseroles.

6. Don’t fry your turkey. Bake your turkey with its own natural juices and avoid extra gravy.

7. After dinner, avoid “seconds”. Try to eating everything on your plate, get up from the table and go into another room to socialize. Sitting at the table too long will entice you to get more food that your body doesn’t need.

8. Go for a walk or play a game between dinner and dessert. Be the person to round up the guests to go for a 15 minute walk or to play touch football on the lawn. If it’s cold outside, that warm dessert will taste that much better.

With these tips in mind and with a healthy holiday ahead, I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Healthy Holiday season. Remember to be grateful for what you have, what you had, and what you can have. Enjoy celebrating with family and friends.


Sarah Kuretzky, MA, CPT, CHHC