Make the Holidays a Little Healthier

ThanksgivingThe holidays traditionally ignites a season of feasting. It’s the time of year when diets are ditched, good intentions are forgotten, and scales start to climb.


But it doesn’t have to be that way.


This year, start a new tradition. Don’t sabotage your healthy eating habits for one gluttonous meal. You can have a delicious, healthy and yes “traditional” holiday meal without all the post-dining guilt if you do some planning. The only thing that should be stuffed is the turkey.


With the help of WebMD, we’ve compiled a list of things to do to make Thanksgiving a little healthier and happier. Here goes:


Get Active

Don’t sit around all day until it is time to eat. Get the family together and play a game of football or soccer. Look for a local 5K run. These types of activities help build family bonds and allow you to burn excess calories before the big meal. Make fitness part of your Thanksgiving tradition.

Eat Breakfast

Too often people skip breakfast and/or lunch before the big holiday meal. Don’t do this. Skipping breakfast is bad for your body. Breakfast kick starts your metabolism and gives you the energy you need for the start of your day. Additionally, if you don’t eat before the big meal, you’ll be so hungry you will likely overeat.

Cook Lighter, Healthier Dishes

As much as everyone loves a Paula Deen recipe, try leaving the unnecessary fat out of your dishes. There are plenty of healthy recipes that you can make and bring with you for the holidays. Some easy tips for cooking healthier are to use fat-free chicken broth, sugar substitutes or plain Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.

Here are some healthy recipes to try this year.

Chipolte Smashed Sweet Potatoes

Quinoa with Garlic, Pine Nuts and Raisins

Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Butternut Squash Soup

Gluten-Free Stuffing

Spicy Parmesan Green Beans and Kale

Eat Smart

When it finally comes time to eat the long-awaited holiday meal, be smart about what and how you eat. Go for the healthier options on the buffet line. Also, don’t overfill your plate with food. We all have a tendency of overloading our plates and then downing all of it. Start with small portions and then if you are really hungry, go back for more.

Listen to what your body is saying. If you are full, don’t go back for more food just because you can. Savor your food and eat slowly. It probably took you, or the other cooks, the better part of the day to prepare this meal. Make sure to enjoy it.


What other ways can you think of to make the holidays a little healthier? Tell us in the comments below, write on our Facebook or tweet us @HealthyCentralF. We want to hear from you!