While this weekend doesn’t mean much to majority of my Australian readers, this post is specifically dedicated to my American readers around the world.
Thanksgiving weekend is only a few days away… the turkey has been bought, the cranberries have been soaked and you now own a pair of stretchy pants so to acknowledge all the overeating that’s about to happen.
An average American will consume about 2,500 calories at Thanksgiving dinner, which is just as scary a number as it seems. So what do you do?
You be clever and start preparing your body for a big meal come this weekend. Here are some tips on how to trick your body and mind into believing that you really haven’t eaten as much as you have. *wink*
- Exercise everyday for an hour this week: If you haven’t already started doing it, finish reading this and go for a run around the block. Working up a sweat before a big weekend of eating is recommended, as you want to ignite your metabolism. So when that bird serves itself on your plate, your body is able to handle it.
- Pre-plan every dish and substitute with healthy ingredients: Use honey where sugar is called for, instead of store-bought powdered gravy, make your own from the juices of roasted turkey – there are little things you can do in your kitchen that will not make you want to unbutton your trousers this weekend. Like, try this delicious Butternut Squash and Kale Salad recipe and this Four Ingredient Vegan Pumpkin Pie.
- Eat breakfast and lunch (on the day and everyday in the lead up): Many people wake up early on Thanksgiving to start preparing for the threateningly large meal ahead and they decide to skip out on meals so that they’re extra hungry for the Thanksgiving meal itself. Do your body a favour and stay on track with small, nutritious meals beforehand. Load up on protein and good fats that will keep you fuller for longer. Just because Thanksgiving food is yummy doesn’t mean we have to eat twice as much of it (plus you need to have leftovers, right?!).
- People are more important than food: Focus on spending time with your loved ones, having meaningful conversations and making memories rather than all your energy on the food. This might mean pulling yourself away from the dessert table or resisting on going back for seconds and thirds. Remember what this day is all about – the ones you love.
- Take a nap post-meal: You’ve had the meal, you’re ridiculously full – now, what? Nap. The sleepiness associated with post-Thanksgiving dinner is from a combination of the tryptophan in turkey, and the amount of energy and insulin being processed from the meal. Your body is pretty drained after spending so much energy on digestion. Sleep for an hour or rest and then move to burn off the meal.It takes two hours for the stomach to empty, so nap first and then get your body moving.
Tell me, are you celebrating Thanksgiving this weekend? Do you want me to share some healthy Thanksgiving recipes here? Tell me below.