Wiregrass Newsroom: Eating Healthy on Thanksgiving

By Daniel Curtis - bio | email

Dothan, Ala. (WSFA) - What's your favorite turkey day food?

Turkey, Dressing, Cranberries?  Well whatever it is healthcare workers are saying don't overdo it on Thanksgiving.

If you're looking for ways to enjoy thanksgiving without killing your waistline; dieticians say approaching the holiday with a game plan is the way to go.

Clinical dietician Katie Hartzog, with the Southeast Alabama Medical Center, says it starts with a conscious decision before you hit the food.

"Say I'm going to enjoy my family and friends, I'm going to enjoy the time I have with them, I going to eat my favorite dishes but also make a choice to have a responsible portions enjoy them thoroughly," said Hartzog.

Hartzog says these simple tips can make all the difference.

n Have a normal breakfast, skipping meals leads to overeating later.

n Move around; if you're not eating until late in the day go for a walk before dinner.

n Drink lots of fluids, what feels like hunger could actually be your body saying it needs water.

n If you're not cooking the whole meal, bring a healthy side.

However when it does come time to eat; Hartzog says don't eat large portions.

Eat only your favorites, just because it's on the table doesn't mean it has to be on your plate.

"Most people will eat around four thousand calories just in that one meal alone most people don't need around two thousand calories a day," says Hartzog

Now if you are cooking a lot of the meal, here are more some simple reminders.

Use whole wheat bread in place of white bread, use broth instead of butter, and most deserts can be made with 25% to 50% less sugar.