Thanksgiving is a day of gratitude, but it can also be a day of overindulgence. The health effects of a heavy meal can be exacerbated by remaining sedentary after the meal has ended.
Getting outdoors, whether you do so before or after your meal, is just one of the ways to have a healthier Thanksgiving. Consumers can also improve the health of their holiday by watching what they eat at the table.
Swaps and substitutions
At the table, health-conscious individuals can look for healthier alternatives to popular Thanksgiving foods. For instance, you can reach for a baked potato instead of marshmallowed sweet potato. Giannopoulos says making this swap will help you eat fewer carbohydrates and less brown sugar.
Vegetarian and gluten-free options
Fortunately for those in need of gluten-free options, many Thanksgiving foods (including turkey, sweet potatoes, and brussels sprouts) are naturally gluten-free. However, sometimes these foods can be mixed with ingredients that contain gluten. If safety is a concern, consider having your gluten-free guests bring a gluten-free dish to share.
What about dessert?
"If you've got your eating under control for the majority of the time, go ahead and have a piece of pie — just don't lose control entirely," Nelson told MyHealthNewsDaily. "Keep your willpower and your wits about you."