What you don’t want to do on Thanksgiving day:
Here’s a few tips for you to make the most of your holiday 🙂
1.Do NOT, I repeat, do NOT starve yourself before your big meal.
“Saving up calories” and starving yourself to get ready to eat is actually one of the worst things you can do. Why? Well, let’s talk about it. Have you ever been SO hungry that by the time you sit down to eat, you eat whatever is put in front of you and pretty much devour it in a few minutes? …and then maybe go for seconds, possibly thirds. We’ve all been there, sometimes on purpose, sometimes not. Did you know that it takes 20 minutes for your body to tell your brain that it’s full. A lot can happen in those 20 minutes and I’m sure we’ve all had that experience of eating too fast and then all of a sudden realizing we’re uncomfortably full. I don’t know about you, but I’m not a fan of that. It just does not feel good.
This is what you want to avoid. Not only do you end up eating WAY more than what you would’ve, but you also are completely disconnected and unaware of what it is you are eating.
Now, I’m not saying you need to “connect” to your food, but I do believe that when you eat more mindfully, you enjoy and actually savor what it is you are eating. I can promise you that you’ll enjoy all the delicious thanksgiving food a lot more if you actually take the time to slow down and notice it.
So long story short, have breakfast and if your thanksgiving meal is not until way later today, then please eat something else too.
Also, if you’re someone running or working out this morning, have a snack after your workout. Don’t go straight from your workout to your gathering …unless you plan on eating pretty soon afterwards. Your blood sugar and your inner hangry will thank you.
2. Do NOT go into thanksgiving emotionally charged.
I know. This is easier said than done. Thanksgiving and family gatherings and big meals can sometimes be associated with a whole bunch of different emotions. Fun Stuff. Now, I’m not saying be an emotionless, numb human BUT consider that some of us are emotional eaters or will blame or turn to our food or body for any emotion we feel during or after the meal. Sometimes, it is SUPER easy to keep shoving food in your mouth in awkward situations or super easy to blame the food or how much you ate for what you are feeling during or after thanksgiving.
My tip for you: Don’t blame the food. Enjoy the food. Find another way to help manage whatever emotions you are feeling. Maybe it’s talking to a good friend, maybe it’s journaling, maybe it’s going to yoga, maybe it’s prayer, or maybe it’s choosing to notice that you feel a certain way and knowing that the food and the meal didn’t cause it. Brilliant. I know.
3. Do NOT guilt yourself.
I think people forget that food is not EVIL. It is nourishment. Delicious, nutritious nourishment. There are some meals where you are simply going to eat a little more than you may usually eat and some meals where you are going to eat a little less. Today, might be the first of the two….and you never know. Stop building this meal up in your head. Stop building up “how much you’re going to eat” or how you are going to feel afterwards…..it is only setting you up for just that.
Trust me, your body can take it. It will not fall apart from one meal just like it won’t fall apart from missing one workout. No, your life is not over. No, your “diet” is not over [which if you’re dieting….don’t…and I’ll have more on that in a later blog post]. Your body is brilliant and knows how to digest food [good job body]. So please, don’t guilt yourself. There is not sense in that. As dietitian Kylie Mitchell would say “The only food you should feel guilty eating is the food you stole”.
4. Do not make Thanksgiving ALL about the Food.
Thanksgiving is about family, friends, connection and most importantly giving thanks. It is not about the food AND it is about what the food creates for us. Take some time to think about your blessings today. Think about last year’s thanksgiving and how far you’ve come and how much you’ve grown. Think about how much your family has changed. Think about the good and the bad. Think about all of it and then choose to notice all the beautiful things life has given you this past year. THAT is what we are giving thanks for. Be thankful for your life and your contribution to your family, friends, and any person you’ve come into contact with this year. Now, go out and celebrate that.
From my belly to yours,