Quick Tips for Filling Your Plate This Thanksgiving

Posted by Luisa de Luca on


friends eating on thanksgiving

Are you scrambling to figure out how to keep your diet on track with Thanksgiving looming over your shoulder? You’re not alone. It’s tempting to throw caution to the wind and have at it, but it’s surprisingly easy to gain several pounds during holiday meals, Thanksgiving in particular. Desserts are the most obvious culprits for packing on the pounds, but calories lurk everywhere, from the cranberry sauce to the green bean casserole. We’ve come up with a few tips to help you keep your diet on track while still enjoying your Thanksgiving feast.


Your stomach is about the size of your fist

Keep that in mind that the amount of food you’re eating has to all fit in your stomach. The more you eat, the more your stomach needs to stretch in order to accommodate the load. If you’re eating in excess of what your stomach can comfortably handle, it’s safe to assume you’re consuming far more calories than your body needs – which will result in extra weight.


Start with a healthy breakfast

Thanksgiving isn’t known for packing essential nutrients into your diet. 310 Shake is the perfect way to jump start your Thanksgiving morning. Fuel your body with essential nutrients like protein and fiber to prepare for the unavoidable carbohydrate intake that will come later. Since it will satisfy your appetite for hours, you won’t be tempted to over indulge on appetizers before the meal is served.


Eat snacks before the main event

Making room in your stomach for Thanksgiving food seems like a good idea in theory. Not only will there be more room for all that turkey and stuffing deliciousness, but the only calories you’ll have to consider are those at the Thanksgiving meal.

That’s not quite the way it works, though. The less you eat before, the hungrier you’ll be later. You’ll be more likely to eat quickly and thus over eat, filling up on sugary and carb-heavy foods that negate any of your initial intentions.


Skip the appetizers

If you’re satisfying your appetite with small, healthy snacks throughout the day, you’ll be less inclined to over-indulge in high calories appetizers before the main event, allowing you to enjoy the foods you’ve been waiting all year for, rather than peaking before the food is even served.


Fill your plate

It may seem counter-intuitive to load up your plate, but there are two tricks to keeping things healthy. If there are different size plates available, opt for the smaller option. Trying to keep portions low with a large plate is difficult because of the optical illusion involved. It looks like you’re eating very little when there’s a lot of plate visible, tempting you to pile on more food. A smaller plate allows you to fill it completely without feeling like you’re lacking.

If there are only big plates available, fill your plate with vegetables first and foremost. Stick with carrots and greens, and then include your favorites in smaller portions. Try to eat only a little of the high-sugar and high-carb options, like sweet potatoes with marshmallows and stuffing.


You can always get seconds

Thanksgiving meals tend to have a wide variety of dishes to choose from and it’s difficult to not take a little bit of everything. Don’t aim for too much too soon. Stick with the vegetables and a couple small helpings of your favorite dishes. Make sure you eat slowly and wait a few minutes before deciding if you want more. Just because there are lots of options doesn’t mean you need to try them all.


While these may seem like obvious tips, logic and willpower go out the window all too easily when you smell the food that awaits you. Take it slow and keep your wits about you so that you can make good decisions this Thanksgiving day.

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