Thanksgiving dinner can easily exceed 3,000 calories, and 4,500 calories in just that one sitting is not unusual! But you don’t have to just sit there. You can burn 200 calories in an hour’s brisk walk. So if we all made a point to take a vigorous walk (or trot!) before and/or after the big meal, we could offset some of those extra calories. That, plus just a LITTLE dining room restraint can make the big day more like a regular calorie day!
In addition… it’s not just the calories. That holiday meal can also include up to 229 grams of fat. That’s like eating 2 1/2 sticks of butter!
Try lots of different fruits, veggies, and whole grains for a healthy diet. You’re bound to find a few you really like!
It’s not polite to turn down dessert, right?! So at least you can choose pumpkin pie, which may well be your healthiest option. No crust on top helps, plus you usually eat it with whipped topping rather than ice cream. It even contains about 2.4 grams of fiber per slice!
As the weather turns colder, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to keep working out inside. You can get a bike trainer like this one brand new for about $50, put any old bike on it, and you’ve got a cardio workout machine the whole family can use!
At Thanksgiving, a lot of different foods get thrown together on the table. And, for many families, Thanksgiving also throws a lot of different PEOPLE together – people of different generations, viewpoints, priorities, feelings, and life experiences – who might not even interact a lot over the rest of the year. This isn’t a time to focus on differences, but on what we have in common, and to realize that we only have so much time in a year and in a lifetime with the people we love, so we need to love them as much as we can! It’s healthier for us all!
Although they aren’t in school, kids can learn a lot at Thanksgiving about their family tree! Encourage the older folks to tell stories of when they were young, and encourage kids to ask questions. They’ll remember what they learn forever!
For questions or information, please contact School Nutrition Services at 804-469-3581.