No other holiday puts food center stage quite like Thanksgiving. Splurging on turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie may not seem like a big deal, but those second helpings add up fast. Americans consume an estimated 4,500 calories at Thanksgiving dinner, which is more than twice the recommended daily intake for active adults. What’s more, new research shows that the extra pounds we put on at the end of the year can take more than five months to lose.
Even here in San Diego, where the weather supports an active lifestyle, it may still feel like weight gain is inevitable this time of year. But Thanksgiving doesn’t have to sabotage your goals to get healthy and fit. Here are some tips for enjoying your favorite foods and traditions while keeping those dreaded holiday pounds off.
Eat a healthy breakfast on Thanksgiving Day
Your plan to skip breakfast to save your appetite may actually cause you to consume more calories later on. Eat a morning meal with a healthy balance of carbohydrates, protein, and fat to jumpstart your metabolism and prevent overeating at dinner.
Go outside and get active
If Thanksgiving morning is usually spent in front of the TV, start a new tradition of heading out into the San Diego sunshine for a walk, hike, or bike ride. You can go solo and use the time to recharge your battery before seeing family, or grab a relative you rarely see and catch up.
Drink plenty of water before Your Thanksgiving meal
There’s always a lot of cooking and cleaning to do on Thanksgiving, and it’s easy to forget to hydrate. Put some sliced lemon or frozen berries in a large water bottle to infuse your H2O with nutrients and aim to refill it a few times throughout the day.
Help with chores to burn calories
Make yourself useful and sneak in some calorie-burning activity by helping with pre-Thanksgiving chores. Did you know you could burn up to 119 calories just by vacuuming for 30 minutes? Put yourself in charge of cleaning the guest bathroom and burn another 90 calories scrubbing the tub.
Skip the appetizers and save it for the turkey
If possible, stay out of the kitchen until it’s time to eat dinner. Bread, cheese, crackers, spreads, and other salty snacks pack in a lot of calories. Save your appetite for the main event.
Load up your plate with veggies
During dinner, eat your green vegetables first. The fiber will make you feel full, leaving less room for fattening foods like candied sweet potatoes and cheesy casseroles. If you’re not stuffed, don’t deny yourself dessert. A few bites of pie at the end of your meal will satisfy your sweet tooth.
Chew slowly and take time between bites
Chewing up to 30 times before swallowing will decrease your calorie intake and allow you to focus on the flavors of the food. Putting your fork down in between bites will also help you recognize when you’re satisfied, preventing you from overeating.
Seek support from a weight loss specialist
Sometimes portion control and exercise aren’t quite enough to keep holiday weight at bay. If you’re struggling to lose those extra pounds despite making healthy lifestyle changes, reach out to a trusted friend or a weight loss specialist who will encourage you and support you in making healthy choices.
reach your weight loss goals in San Diego With Medarts
Thanksgiving doesn’t have to derail your weight loss goals. Making a few tweaks to your dinner plate and finding ways to stay active can help you on your wellness journey. But if you need additional guidance and support to help you fight cravings, avoid overeating, and maintain your health and fitness routine through the holiday season, we can help.
At Medarts Weight Loss Specialists in San Diego, we understand that everyone’s health journey looks a little bit different. Rather than relying on popular diets and trends, we develop individualized programs that utilize lipotropic injections, vitamin injections, and appetite suppressants to help you achieve your weight loss goals. Plus, our staff will be right there with you, providing one-on-one support every step of the way. Call us today to schedule your free consultation at (619) 870-8795.