We all know the “gobble grumble”, that small growl in the pit of our stomach that lurches every time we think about the delectable Thanksgiving feast just days away. Already, the grocery store frozen food isles are filling up with beastly birds. Grocery carts are filled to the max with boxes of stuffing and casserole fixings, and recipe cards abound in kitchens everywhere.
Turkey Day makes it particularly difficult for dieters to come to grips with the concept of moderation, and for good reason. Just once every 364 days we get to splurge like there is no tomorrow and we have to be moderate about it? But if we’re being honest with ourselves, over-indulging doesn’t happen just “once” a year. There are many occasions that call for similar splurging, like our birthdays, Halloween, and the 4th of July. So where does that leave us?
Grappling with the insatiable gobble yet again, trying to desperately find that middle ground where we’re not eating too much, but we’re also satisfied at the same time. It’s hard, but possible. Here are a few tried and true tips and ideas I’ve found that really help out this time around, when you can’t seem to get your fingers out of every dish on the table.
1. Get your fix early. I know this sounds non-traditional, but if you get a small fix of your favorite Thanksgiving dish early, you won’t be as ravenous when the time comes to sit down and give thanks. However, I wouldn’t recommend going all out and cooking a huge turkey a week before the big day. Instead, cook up a few other healthy sides, like fresh cranberry sauce versus the canned version, or small batch of green bean casserole to nibble on. You’re less likely to over eat on the big day if you’ve had your fill the week before.
2. Eat small meals throughout the big day. If you eat a small chicken salad or half a sandwich beforehand, you’re less likely to be as ravenous as your familial counterparts.
3. Take an appetite suppressant. Nowadays there are many safe appetite suppressants you can take to quell your insatiable hunger. The best ones, if you’re into organics, are natural appetite suppressants, with all-natural ingredients. They tend to have no caffeine, and leave you feeling full and satisfied after small portions.
4. Water over wine. It sounds priggish, I know. Wine is a great pre-meal relaxant, but during the meal, when your calorie count is certainly ticking, it’s best to stick with water. It’ll make you full faster, too!
5. Get a good work out in before the big meal. Interval training is a great form of exercise to incorporate into your routine before the big day, because it helps your body continue to burn calories long after you’ve quit moving. Who wouldn’t want to burn calories during their 2-hour food coma?
6. Eat a good salad. Salads aren’t served as appetizers for nothing. They quell your hunger before you dig in, so you’re not as voracious when it comes time for the real deal.
7. Rid yourself of the leftovers quickly. While you may be splurging a tad on the big day, my advice is to skip the leftovers. You don’t want to be tempted to indulge for days after the biggest indulgence of the year!
8. Do the turkey trot. Turn on a little music, and organize a conga line. Ok there likely won’t be any takers there. In which case, encourage a brisk walk. Anything to ease your body into the digestive long haul!
The holidays are troubling for every dieter. While I wholeheartedly suggest indulging in your favorite dishes, it’s important to stop once that full signal sounds. After all, what would the holidays be without simple pleasures like pumpkin pie? But there are plenty of other ways to enjoy the holiday without over-indulging, like enjoying family time, watching parades and sports games, and simply enjoying the time off!
Author Bio: Monique Muro earned a bachelor’s degree in English with a Creative Writing emphasis from Cal State Long Beach. She currently assists with the PR and Social Media marketing for the revolutionary supplement AllDaySlim, and works as a freelance writer on the side. An avid reader and writer, her articles can be found at Suite101, eHow, Ezinearticles.com, Demand Studios, CNNiReport, and Examiner.com. She writes on a variety of topics including fitness, books, movies, current events, and ultimately hopes to publish fiction. You can contact her at email@example.com.