Tips to trim your Turkey day!
By Amanda Behring, RD, November 24, 2014
Don’t let the Thanksgiving holiday set you back on your health journey. It’s possible to still enjoy this food-laden day, without over doing it!
For the cooks:
Whether you’re hosting the day or bringing a dish to pass, here are some tips to make your recipes healthier with less fat, sodium, sugar, and calories, and an extra boost of nutrition. The best part is, your guests won’t even notice!
Cut the fat:
- Use fat-free or low fat versions of your “dairy” ingredients:
- Fat free milk based soups in place of full fat creamed soups (can also look for low sodium versions)
- Plain Greek yogurt in place of full fat sour cream
- Fat free sour cream, cottage cheese, milk, etc
- Use Trans fat free tub margarine in place of butter for less saturated fat
- Steam your veggies rather than making creamed veggies or drenching them in butter (or if you must, simply add a little trans fat free tub margarine)
Boost the fiber:
- Use rolled oats, whole wheat bread crumbs or crushed bran cereal in place of dry bread crumbs
- Use whole-wheat flour in place of all-purpose flour (note: you may not need as much)
- Make your salads with dark leafy greens instead of iceberg or romaine lettuce
Slash the sugar:
- Make an angel food cake with fresh fruit and light cool whip for one of your dessert options (or make it as a trifle layered with vanilla pudding)
- Slice smaller pieces of pie
For the party goers:
For those of you that aren’t doing the cooking, here are a few tips for you so that regardless of what food options there are, you can trim your turkey day too!
- Ease up on extras – “extras” like butter, gravy, condiments, and sauces can tack on hundreds of extra calories and are often unnecessary.
- Go heavy on veggies – traditionally these options will be lower in fat and calories than some of the other side dishes. Plus they have more fiber and nutrients. Try to fill up half your plate with these super foods, and look for options that aren’t drenched in butter or cream sauces.
- Savor slowly – If you eat slowly, putting your fork down between bites, chew your food thoroughly, taste and enjoy each bite, you’ll be likely to eat less and feel more satisfied.
- Stick to your absolute favorites – Rather than filling up your plate with a little bit of everything, stick to only your absolute favorite things that you look forward to this time of year.
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