Did you know that Thanksgiving is one of the top days for heart attacks?
Many people assume that this is because Americans eat a lot of food on that day. But eating a lot of food doesn’t cause a heart attack. Eating a high-fat meal, however, certainly can cause a heart attack.
Just think about it, most of the food you eat on Thanksgiving is slathered in oil or is full of animal products. On top of that, people usually eat a TON of those kinds of dishes.
So if you still want to enjoy Thanksgiving and not compromise your health, what should you do?
Here are 5 tips to help you make this Thanksgiving a healthier one.
1. Focus on Carbs
Remember, carbohydrates (clean carbohydrates, that is) are not your enemies! They are your friends. And because it’s easy to eat a lot of fat on Thanksgiving, you may want to offset that by loading up on the carb-rich dishes like fruit, veggies, and potatoes.
2. Ditch the Oil
Like I mentioned before, Thanksgiving meals usually have lots and lots of oil. However, with many recipes, you can just omit the oil entirely or use water as a substitute.
Many people believe that oil is good for you or don’t see the harm in adding oil to food. However, oil carries no nutrient value on its own – it’s just empty calories that will clog your arteries (leading to heart disease and heart attacks). So it may be best to try and stay away from the oil if at all possible.
3. Sweeten with Dates
Most of us love desserts at Thanksgiving. But having lots of refined and processed sugar can really do a number on our health.
One way that you can have your cake and eat it too (see what I did there?) is to sweeten your dessert dishes with dates. Dates are better to use than refined sugar because it’s a whole food that includes all the fiber and nutrients to help your body break down the natural sugars.
4. Say No To Turkey
This one might be hard for a lot of people, especially since it has been embedded in our culture and traditions.
But like I mentioned earlier, animal products are high in fat that leads to a restriction in blood flow through our arteries. Additionally, many people batter their turkeys up with oil and butter which just adds to the calories coming from fat.
Even though it might be hard, you just gotta do it. Your body will certainly thank you later.
5. Give Thanks
The last tip is to give thanks. We live in a world of plenty and should be grateful for the things we have. Take some time to express your gratitude to God for your family, for your friends, for the food you have and the journey it took to make it onto your plate.
Giving thanks can help us recognize the good that happens in our lives even though at times they may seem chaotic. Giving thanks will help us lead a happier life, which in turn leads to better health.
If you’re not able to implement all of these tips for Thanksgiving, that’s ok! Start with what you can do in your circumstances right now. As you consciously make choices to improve your health, it will get easier and easier as time goes on.
Now I want to hear from you! Do you have any tips for having a healthy Thanksgiving? Leave a comment below!