5 Realistic Tips for a Healthy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is a time to sit back, enjoy your loved ones and nosh on some seriously delicious food. But did you know there is a way to navigate the holiday smorgasbord without going totally overboard? We’re not advocating subbing in steamed veggies and boiled chicken for your Thanksgiving favorites, but with these healthy tips, you can enjoy your favorite green bean casserole and still fit in your skinny jeans on Black Friday.


1. Eat a substantial breakfast

It may seem counterintuitive, but if you skip breakfast on Thanksgiving morning, you’ll be setting your metabolism up for a holiday failure. By eating a well-balanced, substantial breakfast before you dig into your big meal, you’re kickstarting your metabolism for the day.

2. Fit in a workout

Whether you participate in one of the turkey trots going on across the country or you start up a family game of touch football, try to figure out a way to sneak in a short workout at some point on Turkey Day. Another bonus: a short walk after dinner can go a long way to combat post-turkey sleepiness.


3. Indulge in your favorites

You wait all year for your grandma’s famous pumpkin pie. So…go for it! Enjoy that pumpkin pie without an ounce of regret. But to balance out the treat, maybe skip past the store-bought cookies that your cousin brought to the table. Save yourself (and your calories) for the foods that really make your day special.


4. Stay hydrated

Between the free-flowing booze and the heavy-handed use of salt in most dishes on the dinner table, you’re fighting against some big dehydration threats. By keeping hydrated, not only will you feel better on the morning of Black Friday, but you’ll also help flush out any toxins your body isn’t used to having (sugar!) and help your body digest all that yumminess.

5. Take a moment

Thanksgiving is the start of a festive, but sometimes stressful, holiday season. Keep your mental health in check by taking a quiet few moments on Thanksgiving morning to write yourself a list of 10 things that you’re grateful for. Feel free to refer to the list anytime life gets crazy over the next few weeks.

What dish are you most looking forward to on Thanksgiving?

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Cassie Johnston is an award-winning food writer and recipe developer living and working in Southern Indiana. Her work has been feature in national publications such as Gourmet Magazine and The Huffington Post. Cassie’s a big fan of strenuous hikes, cheese, watching sports, Brussels sprouts, and craft beer, and she’ll talk your ear off about her love of local food and seasonal eating. She’s obsessed with social media and loves connecting with new friends!