Tips for a Healthy Thanksgiving

Tips for a Healthy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and we wanted to give you some helpful tips on how to have a healthier time celebrating!

Whether you’re spending the day with family and friends, watching football, or simply enjoying the rewarding company of your pet, one truth remains constant: Thanksgiving is where exercising and dieting go to die.

We enjoy heaping plates of turkey, ham, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, and endless desserts at an alarming rate. With so much temptation, how can we maintain our health—and that of our patients and clients?

After all, the evidence tells us that even moderate levels of physical activity, and less sedentary behavior, can decrease risk of obesity, its related comorbidities, and even life expectancy.

Here are a few reminders to help all of us stay active during the holiday season.

  1. Increase your metabolism. Is running 2 miles the norm? Tack on an extra mile or 2 in anticipation of increased calorie intake. More calories should be met with increased calorie burning.

  2. “Walk the pig.” As the Romanian idiom implies, regularly taking a walk after eating a heavy meal will aid digestion, improve blood glucose and lipid levels, and avoid the “food coma. You’ll also get to hear Uncle Bob tell more stories about distant relatives that you didn’t even know existed!

  3. Plan an after-dinner workout. If you live in an area like Buffalo, taking a walk or driving to the gym isn’t always an option. But that’s no excuse! Stepping in place (or doing some jumping jacks!) during those football game commercials may be just as effective as traditional walking. Chair exercises or a resistance band can be a good substitute for Grandma. Make it a family affair!

  4. Let someone else get the best parking space. If you’re a Black Friday shopper, find the parking space FARTHEST from the store entrance. It can lower your stress level while giving you a few extra steps of exercise.

  5. Stick with it. Exercising on Thanksgiving Day is great, but the long-term effects will come from making physical activity a regular habit. Your body will thank you for it!

Have you come across any new research on best strategies to help patients and clients keep moving and avoid unnecessary weight gain, during the holiday season and throughout the year? Share them in the comments section below, or via social media (hashtag #cornerstonecrew).

Happy Thanksgiving from the Cornerstone Crew!