Top Tips for Sticking to Your Diet on Thanksgiving | Salter School of Allied Health and Nursing
X You may need to Reload the page to make it work correctly.

Top Tips for Sticking to Your Diet on Thanksgiving

diet tips for thanksgiving, photo of a scaleDon’t let turkey day turn you into a pig!

The season of thankfulness and giving is upon us, but unfortunately for many of us, it is also the season of overeating. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and we all know that it’s a holiday that is focused on food. If you are worried that Thanksgiving is going to destroy your diet, try out these tips for keeping a lid on it this Thanksgiving.

Exercise in the morning
Exercise boosts your metabolism, so Thanksgiving morning is the perfect time to get exercise. Go for a hike, organize a football game with your friends, talk a long walk, or see if there is a 5K “turkey trot” near you.

Use smaller plates
If possible, rather than using your finest dinnerware, choose smaller everyday plates for your Thanksgiving dinner. If you have a smaller plate, you can’t fit as much food on it, so it encourages smaller portion sizes.

Limit yourself to one plate only
Are you the type who goes back for seconds, and sometimes even thirds? When you do this, it is hard to visualize how much you are eating. Instead, promise to yourself that you will take only one plate of food. You can still indulge in your favorite foods, but just make sure they fit on one plate.

Go heavy on the white meat, light on the mashed potatoes
When you fill up your plate, try to make health-conscious decisions. Mashed potatoes and stuffing tend to be heavy on carbohydrates, fats, and calories. Instead, choose leaner cuts of turkey, go light on the gravy, and load up on the vegetables.

Eat your meal earlier in the day
Do you eat your Thanksgiving meal at supper time? Instead, try eating it earlier—either as lunch or a late afternoon meal. This gives your body more time to metabolize the food before going to bed.

Choose only one dessert
If you have a large family where everyone brings a dessert, you may be tempted to try a little of everything. Instead, choose just one dessert. And enjoy it! It’s Thanksgiving after all!

Watch the alcohol
If you indulge over the holidays with a few drinks, be careful to limit yourself to just 1 or 2 drinks over the course of the day. Alcoholic drinks contain a lot of calories, and this can increase your calorie intake without your realizing it.

Walk off that turkey
After your meal, be sure to do some exercise. Taking a walk with a family member is a great way to get out of the house, stretch your legs, and get your digestion moving.


With these tip in mind, you can still enjoy your Thanksgiving without overdoing it. We hope you have a great holiday!


The Salter School of Nursing and Allied Health provides healthy living tips and other student advice in its weekly blog. Visit us online to find out more about our nursing programs and how you can enroll.