Thanksgiving survival guide

Can you believe tomorrow is Thanksgiving? I can’t. This year has flown by! But

that’s okay with me because it means tomorrow is a day dedicated to family, friends, and

food. Three of my favorite things. You know what else I’m excited for? Christmas music!

After tomorrow sleigh bells can start ringing and frosty can start singing and my best friend

Deandra won’t be able to do anything about it! (She hates Christmas music. Crazy girl.)

Anyways, back to Thanksgiving. If your family is anything like mine, some of your holiday

dishes could rival Paula Dean’s in butter to food ratio. As delicious as those dishes are, let’s

face it, they’re not doing our bodies any good. In fact, during the holiday season it can be

difficult to find ANY foods that are good for our bodies.

Holiday foods are infamous for their high calorie counts so it’s no surprise that the average

American consumes 4,500 calories or more on Thanksgiving alone (Calorie Control

Council). That’s more than double the daily recommended calorie intake for an adult.

Although it deeply saddens me to say this, there are some holiday foods that you’re going to have to completely avoid. Foods with high fat and sodium levels like processed or fried

foods may taste good, but they’re bad for your body. Especially your heart.

Most holiday staples such as stuffing or eggnog are okay, as long as they’re eaten in

moderation. You can even treat yourself to dessert if you don’t go overboard. Save yourself

from guilt and excess calories by only eating a serving of your favorite holiday dessert. I’ll

be practicing what I’m preaching this Thanksgiving with my Aunt Mary’s peach pie. Wish

me luck.

Fortunately, there are several holiday foods that taste good while also having high

nutritional value. Vegetables and proteins suppress appetite because they take longer to

digest. Proteins include lean meats such as turkey or chicken and seafood/fish such as

salmon or shrimp. (Vegetables are pretty self-explanatory.) Fill your plate with these foods

and you’re less likely to overeat.

Making healthier eating choices isn’t always easy, and it’s infinitely harder around the

holidays. But if you can survive the holidays, continuing these healthy habits throughout

the year will be a cake walk. Next year, when family asks you what you’re thankful for, you

can say you’re thankful your pants will still fit after dinner.

That’s all I’ve got, but if you’d like to know more about healthy food choices and how to

make them, contact our Occupational Therapist and Nutritional Specialist Susan Jarrett at

304-265- 1288 or visit our website at

We look forward to hearing from you.

#healthyliving #nutrition #thanksgiving

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