4 Easy Tips to Make Thanksgiving Healthy

By Sara Butler

Mother Cooking Pumpkin on Thanksgiving

Ah, Thanksgiving -- the one time of year it’s socially acceptable to unbutton your pants at the dinner table. It’s a celebration full of family, turkey, football, and naps. What’s not to love?

While we here at The Joint Chiropractic hope you and your family have the best Thanksgiving ever, we’d be remiss not to mention just a few ways you can work a little health into your turkey day. Don’t worry, we’re not going to lecture you too much on that fourth serving of pie, but if you follow a few of these suggestions you just might have the best and healthiest Thanksgiving ever.

Take a Deep Breath

The holidays are wonderful and are supposed to provide an opportunity to relax but can, quite ironically, be one of the most stressful times of the year. Families gather together to create memories, but the memories no one talks about making are the ones in which your mother nags you about what you’re wearing or you argue with your sister about something that happened on Thanksgiving in 1997. BTW, I did not steal her boyfriend.

The point is, on Thanksgiving there tend to be just a few too many chefs in the kitchen, creating stress for you. Instead of homicidal fantasies, find your happy place. Slow down and try taking six deep breaths in and out as you carve the turkey or mash the potatoes. It will help you to stay centered and calm -- and just so happens to be good for the digestive system, too. Maybe you’re not your mother’s favorite child (we all know it’s you, Julie), but you can be the calmest!

Have a Laugh

Laughter is what getting together with family and friends is all about, so try to work a little laughter into your day. It’s good for your mood but also good for your heart, your blood vessels, and your vascular system as a whole. It also happens to be contagious. Of all the things there are to catch this time of year, laughter is hands down the best one. Laugh a little and others won’t be far behind.

Go for a Walk

Try to work a little movement into your day and you’ll be better off for it. Go for a walk before you start cooking for the day or roll yourself out of the house for a small walk after dinner. Breathe in the fresh air and think about all the things there are to be thankful for; after all, it’s appropriate.

Eat

Are you wearing your eating pants? You know what we’re talking about . It’s OK to be thankful that leggings have come back in style.

People love the bounty Thanksgiving has to offer and you don’t have to miss out in order to stay healthy. You can lighten things up a bit by making some good choices, making sure to have just a little of everything. Load up on vegetables like potatoes. They’re good for your heart and have vitamins that promote a healthy nervous system. Pumpkin provides vital nutrients that can help promote a better mood, cranberries are great for your kidneys, and turkey is full of protein and vitamins that help to regulate your sleep cycle and strengthen your immune system.

Look, one day of indulgence isn’t the end of the world, so enjoy yourself. Eat, take a nap, laugh with your family, watch the game, and be thankful that you’ve lived through yet another Thanksgiving. There’s more bickering and pants splitting to look forward to next year.

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