Thanksgiving is coming!
And while I feel that a splurge meal once a year is no big deal, many of my clients are on health journeys that require them to decline or moderate what they would normally have on Thanksgiving.
If you are on a health or weight loss journey, here are my tips for enjoying yourself on thanksgiving without totally throwing in the towel!
Cook your own foods.
Especially if you are on an autoimmune or gut healing journey, making your own Thanksgiving foods is a must. This is also helpful if you are on a weight loss journey.
Most pre-made thanksgiving foods are going to have added ingredients like sugar, dairy, and preservatives that may not fit in with your goals.
When you make your own foods, you can control what you put in them! You can find recipes that meet any dietary need and that are clean and healthy.
Make your sides healthier
Consider focusing on the healthier dishes of thanksgiving: things like turkey, cranberry sauce, and potatoes. Then, try finding ways to healthify the sides you’re making.
Sweet potatoes don’t have to be covered in marshmallow and sugar! Green bean casserole can be made without dairy and canned soup!
Use the resources available on the internet to plan your options ahead of time.
Search suggestions: Try searching the internet and pinterest for paleo or autoimmune paleo thanksgiving recipes. You’ll find hundreds of results!
I also suggest investing in some great cookbooks for special occasions. I love Celebrations by Danielle Walker. Find it here.
Choose one item to splurge on (like pie) and have a normal sized piece.
If you go into thanksgiving in advance knowing this is what you are going to splurge on, and how much of it, you’ll be less likely to blow the whole day!
Focus on the filling and healthy parts of thanksgiving- eat lots of turkey, have some of the cranberry sauce, green beans, and some potatoes and don’t eat a ton of the dressing or sweet stuff.
Before the big meal, make sure to drink plenty of water and eat sensibly and normally the whole day. Don’t fast in preparation for the meal unless you are a person who regularly fasts.
If you do often do intermittent fasting, it may be beneficial to fast until the meal and then moderate your approach to the meal as well.
If you do go overboard on Thanksgiving, treat yourself well the next day. Make sure to drink plenty of water and focus on lots of vegetables during the day.
Adding a few glasses of green vegetable juice is a great way to boost nutrients and recover from the post-thanksgiving “hangover”.
If you are a person who regularly fasts or juices, sometimes the day after going overboard is a great time to incorporate a mini fast.
Adding bone broth into your day will help with any gut disruption that happened. Make sure to use grass-fed bone broths (like these) to make sure you get the most healthy effect.
Remember, no matter how much extra you eat (or don’t) the day after thanksgiving is a new day and the right time to start fresh! Don’t let yourself fall off the wagon because of guilt over “cheating”.
Have a great Thanksgiving!