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Weight Control Tips for Thanksgiving


This holiday brings lots of family and friends together along with feasts and all the fixings. Most look forward to enjoying homemade dishes. Not everyone welcomes the weight gain though. Here are some ways to avoid those pesky pounds.

  • Use the buddy system and pair up with another family member or friend who’s also watching their weight.
  • Exercise everyday especially on Thanksgiving Day.  Don’t veg out on the couch post-meal, play tag-football or help the host clean up. It may not be a realistic goal to lose weight as opposed to maintaining it during the holidays.  If overindulging is on the agenda, get plenty of exercise earlier in the week and during the days following to make up for consuming extra calories.
  • Make lighter versions of traditional recipes.  Use or fat-free sour cream or yogurt in casseroles, dips or mashed potatoes. Low sodium or fat-free chicken broth can be used to baste a turkey. When possible, use less oil and butter like with baked goods.
  • Don’t show up starving.  Have a healthy snack or light meal beforehand.  Steer clear of heavy holiday appetizers too. Veggies and fresh fruit are optimal snacks low in calories but hunger satisfying. Save the calories for the main meal.
  • Eat slowly and enjoy it. Indulge cravings- to an extent.  It’s ok to have a small portion of macaroni and cheese or mashed potatoes if it’s a favorite, just don’t overdue. Small servings are key.
  • Having a drink or two? Have a glass of wine with the meal instead. Too much alcohol leaves many people less inhibited to eat more than normal.
  • When it comes to dessert have a sliver of pie or cake.  Pumpkin pie is less calories than pecan.
  • When the meal is over, drink some water and don’t go for seconds, go for a walk.

Exercising more and eating less is the best plan of attack when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner.

Zelman, MPH, RD, LD, Kathleen M. “10 Tips for a Thinner Thanksgiving.” WebMD.com. 17 Nov. 2008. 18

Sept. 2013. http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/10-tips-for-a-thinner-thanksgiving?page=1.

Avoid Thanksgiving Weight Gain. WebMD.com. 2004. 18 Sept. 2013.


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