Health Coach Corner – Healthy Holiday Tips

Health Coach Corner by Maria Hicks

Get Active

Create a calorie deficit by exercising to burn off extra calories before you ever indulge in your favorite foods.  Some cities have “Turkey Trot” 5K or 10K races.  Try one this year!

Eat Breakfast

While you might think it makes sense to save up calories for the big meal, experts say eating a small meal in the morning can give you more control over your appetite.

Lighten Up

Whether you are hosting Thanksgiving dinner or bringing a few dishes to share, make your recipes healthier with less fat, sugar, and calories.

  • Use fat-free chicken broth to baste the turkey and make gravy.
  • Use sugar substitutes in place of sugar and/or fruit purees instead of oil in baked goods.
  • Reduce oil and butter wherever you can.
  • Try plain yogurt or fat-free sour cream in creamy dips, mashed potatoes, and casseroles.

Police Your Portions

Thanksgiving tables are bountiful and beautiful displays of traditional family favorites. Before you fill your plate, survey the buffet table and decide what you’re going to choose. Then select reasonable-sized portions of foods you cannot live without.

Skip the Seconds.

Try to resist the temptation to go back for second helpings.

Choose the Best Bets on the Buffet.

While each of us has our own favorites, keep in mind that some holiday foods are better choices than others.

White turkey meat, plain vegetables, roasted sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, defatted gravy, and pumpkin pie tend to be the best bets because they are lower in fat and calories

Slowly Savor

Eating slowly, putting your fork down between bites, and tasting each mouthful is one of the easiest ways to enjoy your meal and feel satisfied with one plate full of food, experts say.

Go Easy on Alcohol

Don’t forget those alcohol calories that can add up quickly.

Be Realistic

The holiday season is a time for celebration. With busy schedules and so many extra temptations, this is a good time to strive for weight maintenance instead of weight loss.

Focus on Family and Friends

Thanksgiving is not just about the delicious bounty of food. It’s a time to celebrate relationships with family and friends.

More Turkey Day tips at: www.webMD.com; www.nourishinteractive.com; www.healthcastle.com