Thanksgiving is about celebrating gratitude, family and friendships.
Food is also a huge component of how many of us celebrate the holidays with our families, and that's OK. You don’t have to deny dessert – it’s about moderation and living a balanced life!
Below you will find some great health, fitness, and happiness tips to get you through this Thanksgiving holiday, as well as one of our favorite Pecan Pie recipes that is Fit-Tabulous and Guilt Free!
Fit-Tabulous Pecan Pie
2 cups ground almond flour or oat flour
2 Tbs coconut oil
1 egg (cage free – vegetarian fed)
1/4 tsp sea salt
Combine the flour and salt in large mixing bowl. Add in egg and coconut oil. Use hand mixer to form the dough and press it into a greased pie dish. Bake at 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes.
12 dates (remove the pits and soak in water for 4 hours)
2 cups pecans (have extra topping the pie)
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp nutmeg
2 Tbs coconut oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
In large mixing bowl, combine 2 cups pecans and spices, then add the dates, coconut oil and milk. Once thoroughly combined, pour mixture into a pie shell. Top pie with extra pecans. To set - place in fridge for 30 minutes. Take out, heat up, and enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving!
Before heading to the kitchen, keep these healthy tips in mind to enjoy the festive food without going overboard.
- Eat breakfast. Skipping breakfast in order to “save your appetite” for dinner probably isn’t the best idea. Not breaking the fast ‘til the afternoon may lead to binging later on (read: four servings of mashed potatoes) .
- Hydrate. Make sure to drink water throughout the day to stay hydrated. Not drinking enough could spark hunger pangs, which may actually be thirst.
- Go easy on the appetizers. Cheese and crackers can happen any day of the year. Save your appetite (and calorie consumption!) as it gets closer to dinnertime.
- Use a smaller plate. Stick all those Thanksgiving sides on a smaller plate. Research shows a bigger plate of food may be licked clean, even if we’re not hungry.
- Dim the lights. Dimming the lights may lead to consuming less food. So create a nice intimate ambiance that everyone will love.
- Chew slowly. How quickly we eat really does matter. Chewing slowly could mean less calories consumed, so take a chill pill when digging into the dinner plate .
- Watch out for dangerfoods. Be careful of foods that aren’t as healthy as they seem. (Green bean casserole, anyone?) Gratins, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce may hide some sneaky ingredients high in fat and sugar.
- Drink responsibly. Unfortunately, liquid calories can sneak up on us during the holidays. Go easy on the booze and stick to a healthier cocktail like a vodka soda or bloody mary to avoid excess sugar.
- Skip the seconds. Wait 20 minutes (the amount of time it probably takes to feel full) before filling up the dinner plate again. Unless you’re really hungry, save some food for leftovers — the best part about Thanksgiving, right?
The Thanksgiving Day Parade doesn’t air all day. Skip crowding around the TV and try to fit in some fitness in (the more the merrier!).
- Get outside. Up early? Go for a walk to enjoy some pre-festivities alone time, or grab your favorite second cousin to catch up. For something a bit more intense, round up a group of family or friends and hit the backyard or local park for some flag football.
- Do it fast. Don’t have an hour to hit the gym? Try an at-home circuit workout. All it takes is 20 minutes (or less!) to get in a good workout.
- Split up the chores. Everyday activities (like tidying up the family room) can burn more calories than you’d think. So offer to do the dishes or swiffer the floor — not only does it lend a hand, it gets you moving, too!
- Bust a move. Nothing says family bonding more than a dance party. Gather a group, turn up the tunes, and get the blood flowing. It may help digest all that stuffing, too.
- Find a turkey trot. If up for the challenge, run a race Thanksgiving morning! There are a ton of Turkey trots around the country, so sign up and add crossing the finish line to your holiday to-do list.
An overdose of family and food can be stressful. Here are some ways to feel rested, calm, and in control.
- Inhale, exhale. Stressed because you’re trying to clean the bathroom and prep the turkey while entertaining seven cousins and Skyping with your Uncle? Take six to 10 deep breaths or try other quick, breathing exercises to relax.
- Write it down. If choosing to count calories over the holidays, track your food in a journal so you know how much you’re consuming. (Wait, I did have a hearty breakfast!) This will keep us in control of what and how much we’re eating.
- Meditate. Whether enduring too much family time or unable to resist eating a whole pumpkin pie (we understand), some meditation will could help lower stress levels. All you need is a few minutes and a quiet corner.
- Get enough sleep. Make sure to get seven to nine hours of sleep the night before Thanksgiving. Not getting enough sleep could amp up appetite levels the following day.
- Give yourself some wiggle-room. At the end of the day, Thanksgiving should be enjoyed with loved ones, and people should not worry about enjoying some good food with even better company!