Published on November 26, 2013

Thanksgiving Nutrition Tips From Genesis Center For Weight Management


Thanksgiving traditions include too much eating and too much television.

We become warriors of the wishbone and special forces of the stuffing.

It is estimated that some Americans may consume more than 4,500 calories on Thanksgiving. If they do, they'll know it because their bodies will inform them with bloating, sluggishness and if they are lucky, a nap.

You don't even have to eat excessively large portions to hit 2,500 calories for the big meal of the day.  Add some tasty leftovers later and you can approach 4,500 calories.

"Thanksgiving has a tradition of excess that makes us uncomfortable when we could be enjoying the day with friends and family,'' said Kathy Crooks, supervisor of the Genesis Center for Weight Management.  "With a few adjustments, we're going to take in hundreds of fewer calories, we'll feel better physically and have less regret about how we stuffed ourselves.''

The Genesis dietitians provided these tips to help handle the day more comfortably and actively:

• Don't skip breakfast to "save'' calories for the big meal. Eat breakfast and you may not be as hungry when you sit down for the feast.
• Get some exercise.  Go for a long walk or a bike ride after breakfast or after the big meal. Take kids outside to play.
• Use smaller plates. There is evidence from studies indicating people who use smaller plates consume fewer calories.
• Avoid alcohol. These empty calories will only make you feel more tired and possibly less hospitable with guests.
• Skip the extras like butter, gravy and whipped cream.
• Socialize. If you are talking during the big meal, you will be digesting the meal more efficiently and you won't feel like eating as much.  Put down the fork and take a break to talk about Obamacare.  On second thought, choose a different subject.
• Modify the recipes.  With a few minor changes in the recipes of traditional favorites, calories can be reduced.
• Check out what is available and only eat your favorites. You are not required to have some of the "special recipe'' passed down through generations.

The Genesis Center for Weight Management has surgical and non-surgical options for weight loss provided by a team of experts.  For information, go to www.genesishealth.com/bariatric or call (563) 421-8361.
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