Healthy Thanksgiving Bites

Happy November!  The time has changed, the days are shorter, and Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  Below are some tips and facts for a healthy holiday meal.

Exercise in the morning, before you eat.  Did you know when you eat a large meal, the majority of your blood is redirected to the organs involved in digestion?  This is one of the reasons people feel sluggish after feasting.  Exercising after eating doesn’t “aid in digestion,” as is often believed- napping does.

Speaking of feasting...  Don’t eat too much food, and don’t go back for seconds.  A typical Thanksgiving meal, with alcohol and dessert, can have upwards of 2,000 calories in it, not to mention oodles of saturated fat.  It would take 20 miles of walking to burn off your meal.

According to, one cup of cranberries has 50 calories, while one cup of cranberry sauce has 400 calories.  Cranberries are an excellent source of antioxidants, and also prevent plaque formation on teeth.  

Pumpkins are high in fiber and vitamin A, and can be used for things other than pumpkin pie.  In fact, pumpkin soup is an excellent option as a soup and, depending on the recipe, has around 135 calories and 2 grams of fat.  A slice of pumpkin pie from Whole Foods has 240 calories, and 10 grams of fat.

The first Thanksgiving was held in 1621; according to the US Census Bureau, 117 million households celebrated Thanksgiving in 2009.  The average American consumes 13.8 pounds of turkey a year, and 5.2 pounds of sweet potatoes a year.

“What we’re really talking about is a wonderful day set aside on the fourth Thursday of November when no one diets.  I mean, why else would they call it Thanksgiving?”  

~ Erma Bombeck