According to research from the Calorie Control Council, the average person will consume more than 4,500 calories and a whopping 229 grams of fat during a typical holiday gathering. From snacking to eating a traditional Thanksgiving dinner with turkey and all the trimmings, the third Thursday of November is a bad day for most people’s diet.
So how are these 4,500 calories typically doled out on your Thanksgiving plate(s)? The Daily Meal paints our plate this way: mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, candied yams, cranberry sauce, stuffing, biscuit, turkey, turkey gravy, brussel sprouts, corn, spinach, and of course, dessert. While Thanksgiving dishes vary from home to home and person to person, the average eater is bound to exceed their daily recommended calorie intake unless they take precautions.
How can you curb all of this calorie intake? Eat breakfast on Thanksgiving morning. This will prevent overeating at the big meal. Drink water throughout the day. Although this is a good practice on any day of the year, it will help curtail your cravings as you sit down to the table because your stomach is already semi-full. Finally, get outside and do something active after your meal. Researchers say that a post-meal stroll helps clear glucose from the bloodstream in part because more of it is taken up by the muscles. Heading for a brief walk, instead of the couch, about 15 minutes after a meal may improve digestion and blood sugar control
On Thanksgiving Day, remember that while it is important to enjoy your meal, it is just as important not to eat yourself into a food coma. The New York Times writes that at some point, the body just says no. After about 1,500 calories in one sitting, the gut releases a hormone that causes nausea. So eat your breakfast, drink your water and go for a post-meal walk around the neighborhood in order to keep your caloric intake as balanced as possible this Thanksgiving!