Feasting Fit: How to Have a Healthful Thanksgiving

More patients being seen for chest pain on Thanksgiving afternoon or evening than at any other time, with overindulgence being a significant factor.
Published: Nov. 14, 2023 at 3:39 PM EST
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ORLANDO, FL (Ivanhoe Newswire) – With the holiday season comes the promise of hearty feasts and cherished family moments. However, it’s important to strike a balance between indulgence and mindful eating, especially for those managing conditions like congestive heart failure, kidney disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure. According to the Emergency Department at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, more patients being seen for chest pain on Thanksgiving afternoon or evening than at any other time, with overindulgence being a significant factor.

Turkey, potatoes, and pie—these holiday staples tempt us with their comforting flavors and aromas. However, it’s crucial to be aware of the nutritional impact of these festive foods.

On average, Americans consume about three thousand calories during the Thanksgiving holiday. Overindulging can be dangerous, especially for people with congestive heart failure, kidney disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

Opt for a leaner approach by choosing turkey breast over dark meat. Roasting, rather than deep-frying, preserves flavor with fewer calories. Instead of butter, consider using a light spray of oil for a healthier glaze. Nutritionist Serena Pratt advises, “Turkey, it’s a protein source. So, we always want to encourage people to have protein.”

Swap out high-sodium boxed stuffing for a homemade version. Utilize whole wheat bread, low-sodium broth, onion, celery, and fresh herbs for a flavorful, heart-conscious side.

For a more healthful cranberry sauce, opt for fresh cranberries combined with honey, water, and a hint of orange zest. The result is a naturally sweetened alternative without high fructose corn syrup.

Steamed green beans instead of a calorie-dense green bean casserole save nearly 175 calories. Prepare mashed potatoes with skim milk for a leaner option.

Indulge in pie while opting for a lighter alternative by skipping the whipped cream, saving an additional 30 calories.

Thanksgiving is more than just a feast; it’s a unique opportunity to bring loved ones together through the joy of shared meals. Remember, making healthful choices during the holidays is an act of self-care that transcends far beyond the dinner table.