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Be Thankful for These 4 Strategies to Ensure a Great Thanksgiving

By Sara Butler

Thanksgiving Health Tips

Do you remember that episode of Friends, the one where Joey borrows Phoebe’s maternity pants and put them on for Thanksgiving? That seems about right -- I mean, when was the last time you wore tight pants to Thanksgiving dinner?

Thanksgiving is something to look forward to all year long, but it’s also a day you pretty much end up hating yourself afterward because you feel as stuffed as that poor turkey you just devoured.

This year, how about a Thanksgiving in which you love yourself a little? There are some solid strategies you can use to have a Thanksgiving dinner that is satisfying and delicious -- and you don’t walk away never wanting to see another piece of pumpkin pie again. Here are a few tips from the chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic you can use to make some smarter choices this turkey day and have the best Thanksgiving ever!

Tip No. 1: Listen to Your Body

Trying to keep Uncle Bob and Great Aunt Edna from arguing about politics is a full-time job at holiday get-togethers, which makes Thanksgiving a stressful time of year. That means it’s an occasion ripe for mindless eating as well as mindless comments.

It’s important to take time from your referee duties to check in with yourself and think about how you’re feeling. Are you hungry? Are you full? Make sure that midway through your dinner you stop and think about how you feel. This can help you to eat what you need and what you want without going totally overboard.

Tip No. 2: Get Colorful

The whole point of Thanksgiving is to celebrate the bounty that the season has given us, so you should have a large array of colorful vegetables and fruits to fill your plate. Beets, carrots, squash, and pomegranate are all in season, so focus on making half your plate vegetables and fruit -- and don’t forget to add your favorite protein.

Tip No. 3: Have Only What You Love

Just because your grandma made roughly 326 pounds of mashed potatoes with roughly the same amount of butter and cream doesn’t mean you’re obligated to eat them. Let your taste buds guide you through this holiday and only go for things you really want. Having foods just because they’re there is how you end up feeling miserable later. And if you really don’t want to hurt Grandma’s feelings, nothing is preventing you from having a tablespoon of spuds and then telling her you had your fill..

Tip No. 4: Pack on the Protein

One of the most positive things about your Thanksgiving feast is that there should be no shortage of lean protein choices. Utilize the copious amounts of turkey before you to help balance out all the carbohydrates and starches in the buffet. A good rule to follow is to make sure to have a serving size of protein about the size of your fist.

What if You Go Too Far?

Sometimes, despite your best efforts, you go back for fourths of your favorite pie. What should you do then? Well, forgive yourself! Indulging one day a year isn’t a crime, so don’t be mad at yourself beyond that tryptophan-induced nap. Move past the guilt and realize that tomorrow is another day, a day you should use to get back on track. Make sure to drink plenty of water, get a good night’s rest, go for a walk, and have a good breakfast the next morning full of protein and fiber. Everything is going to be OK!

From all of us here at The Joint Chiropractic, we hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving that doesn’t leave you feeling like a giant blueberry, a la Violet Beauregarde from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory; just follow these tips and you can leave the maternity pants in the closet.

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