Who doesn’t look forward to the bounty of a Thanksgiving dinner? We love gathering with family and friends, celebrating good news, honoring traditions and breaking bread together.
The problem? “The average American will consume a hefty 3,000 calories on Thanksgiving — for dinner alone. (That’s 1,000 more than the average woman needs in a day!) Drinks, dessert and appetizers can bring the total calorie count to 4,500, according to the Calorie Control Council. (https://caloriecontrol.org/stuff-the-bird-not-yourself-how-to-deal-with-the-3000-calorie-thanksgiving-meal/)
You can still enjoy some of those favorites and still watch your calorie intake. Start by reducing the amount of salt, sugar and oil. Not every dish needs to be loaded with butter and sugar. The Calorie Control council suggests trying these “Low-Fat Holiday” tips from the American Heart Association:
• Eat lower-fat and reduced-calorie foods for days in advance of the holiday feast, and for days after.
• Prepare for handling your worst temptations; if you want both pecan and pumpkin pie, take a tiny slice of each, instead of a full serving.
• If cooking, provide low-fat foods, or ask if you can bring a low-fat dish.
• After the meal, start a tradition — a holiday walk, for instance.
Remember, you can lighten your holiday feasting and still have an enjoyable time. For more information about the average calorie counts of some holiday favorites, check out this table from the CCC. HERE
I’m not suggesting you do a clean sweep of your Thanksgiving favorites. Your friends and family would probably rebel, but you can start by substituting a healthier, lower calorie and lower fat recipe for one you might otherwise include. Just 1. That’s a start.
I shared several lower sodium, lower calorie, lower fat options this week on THV11. I’ll be sharing those with you throughout the week, so come back soon.
Here are a couple of our favorites just to get you started:
- Maple Glazed Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Sweet Potatoes and Cranberries with Toasted Pecans
- Roasted Pear Autumnal Salad with Maple Vinaigrette
You’ve had green bean bundles. Now’s the time to give this asparagus version a try. It’s savory rather than sweet, cutting out a lot of those calories typically found in the green bean version.