Thanksgiving is next week! Are you ready? Have you thought about your eating plan yet? By that I mean, are you going to cheat, eat healthy foods, or just decide on the big day? (If you want some delicious, on-plan Thanksgiving meal ideas I can send a printable meal plan straight to your email inbox – just scroll to the bottom of the page to sign up!).
No judgment here – I used to plan Thanksgiving meals as cheat days and I always enjoyed it. I do have to confess that I regretted it after, though!
This year, like the years before, I'm planning NOT to cheat, and here's why:
1. Just like Halloween, I've found that it's incredibly difficult to get back to my healthy eating habits after a day of overindulgence.
2. Along the same lines, I am historically terrible at resisting unhealthy Thanksgiving leftovers.
3. I know that I can make traditional Thanksgiving foods in a delicious, healthy way.
4. On Thanksgiving (and the days after!) I can feel trim and energetic instead of bloated and sluggish.
5. I'm done with unhealthy cravings and I don't want them back!
But Jen, you might be saying, What if I'm not hosting Thanksgiving? What if I'm at the mercy of my sister-in-law's sweet potato pie and my mom's thousand calorie mashed potatoes?
The way you eat on Thanksgiving is completely your choice. In the past, I've definitely felt that fun and fellowship would be better served by eating whatever I wanted, and I loved it. Other years, I haven't wanted to hurt the hostess' feelings and dug in without reservation. But if you DO want to stay on plan this Thanksgiving, here are a few quick tips:
1. Bring healthy side dishes and desserts to share. Vegetables like Brussels sprouts, sautéed green beans, asparagus (I have a great recipe here!), or broccoli are delicious options. You could also bring stevia sweetened cranberry sauce (there's a great recipe linked up in my free Thanksgiving menu above).
There are TONS of Trim Healthy Mama dessert options available – or pretty much any low-carb dessert will work. I have a bunch of tried-and-true THM-friendly pumpkin recipes if you need some inspiration. In addition to a side and dessert, I like to take some kind of low-carb bread or roll because the buttered rolls will get me every time.
2. Enjoy what you can – go ahead and chow down on that turkey! Look for any veggies or sides that might already work on the Trim Healthy Mama plan, even if it means you end up eating a crossover meal (crossovers are better for you than cheats).
3. Swing by the store for some Rebel ice cream for a personal choice store-bought treat to keep you from feeling deprived.
4. Eat a pickle. This might sound totally strange, but when you're done with your meal and dessert eat a dill pickle to curb cravings and stop you from non-stop munching. I read this trick in a book many years ago, and it really works! Sometimes I need help to stop eating Thanksgiving food, even when it's healthy, and the pickle trick can keep me from overeating.
I hope you have an amazing and blessed Thanksgiving!