5 Healthy Thanksgiving Dinner Ideas

 Sports Nutrition Certification

Creating a healthy Thanksgiving feast doesn’t have to add stress to the already bustling holiday. There are things that you can do to make your Thanksgiving table healthier without having to sacrifice taste. If you ask a fitness expert if they eat Thanksgiving dinner with their families, they will tell you how they indulge in their favorite holiday foods and secrets to how they keep it healthy. 

Athletic women and men alike want to keep holiday meals as healthy as they can. They’ve worked hard all year long and may have even worked with a certified diet coach to make the progress they have along their wellness journey. They do not want to give up or sacrifice those results over a Thanksgiving dinner and then have to spend months ahead trying to get back on track. Here are some ideas that you can use to keep your Thanksgiving meal healthy:

1. Add extra nutrients to your regular foods to increase the nutritional content. You can add chia seeds to your salads and breads to increase the nutritional value. Chia seeds benefits include Omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and a reduction in body inflammation. Chia seeds are rich in protein, fiber, and can help you feel full and aid with weight loss. 

2. Bake or roast your turkey instead of frying it. Baking or roasting the turkey helps to cut back on calories. Eating less fried foods also increases personal wellness and overall health.

3. Add colorful vegetables to your table spread. Dietician classes boast the health benefits of vegetables. Use this holiday season to experiment with new vegetables and go for color! Replace your iceberg lettuce with spinach or kale. Add fresh vegetables and hummus dip or another vegetable dip to your table to snack on instead of sweets. 

4. Go fresh! Fresh vegetables and fruits have higher nutritional content than canned. Use fresh green beans and fresh cranberries instead of canned. Use fresh sweet potatoes instead of canned yams. Using fresh vegetables tastes better, looks more visually appealing on your Thanksgiving table, and boosts the nutritional value of your meal.

5. Add healthier dessert options. Nobody likes to skip desserts on Thanksgiving. Serve a pumpkin pie or sweet potato pie instead of a meringue or sugary pie. Pumpkin has less calories and fat and provides fiber and other vitamins for health benefits. Serve fresh berries with a yogurt topping and fresh nuts. This combination provides antioxidants and protein and is naturally sweet without the guilt. 

Making your Thanksgiving dinner healthier is easier than you think. Contact a dietary consultant for additional ways to make your holiday meals more nutritious. They can also help you if you have specific dietary needs or food allergies and need more creative ideas for making your holiday meals healthier.

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