Thanksgiving Day is the Super Bowl of Eating, the day Americans anxiously anticipate with thankfulness and loathing all at the same time. It’s time to saddle up to the table, reflect and enjoy the timeless bounties of foods respun with family history. Sounds great, but when all is said and done, misery, guilt, and regret from overindulging all day long can wait at the end of the long family table. It’s time to strategize your day around healthfulness. One day of poor eating on Thanksgiving Day sets the stage for your Holiday Season!

What should you eat on Thanksgiving morning? Start by having a plan. We do not set out to fail on Thanksgiving, but too many fail to plan. You succeed when you have a Thanksgiving eating plan. Agree to ground rules, eat the right breakfast, then consume healthy foods throughout the day!

Thanksgiving Day Ground Rules:

  • OVERCROWD your day with healthy, nutrient-dense, plant-based foods including seeds and nuts, beans, greens, and berries.
  • NO SKIPPING MEALS, which only slows your metabolism and allows your body to rob the muscles for energy.
  • HYDRATE all day. Juice, alcohol, champagne, and flavored coffees increase blood sugar levels and start the cascade of cravings and poor choices. Instead, aim for consuming 50-70% of your body weight in fluid ounces of lemon water to alkalize your body and to detox the liver, especially with all the Holiday foods!
  • DRINK A SMOOTHIE or PROTEIN SHAKE early in the day. Protein satiates and greens provide added nutrients to keep less healthy choices at bay.
  • EXERCISE upon waking. With just a brisk 30 minute walk or a 15 minute High Intensity Interval Workout, you’ll reap the benefits of burning fat throughout the day and you will increase your chances of staying on track at the dinner table.
  • NO GUILT if you fall off course. One glass of wine won’t break the whole day unless it becomes the excuse for throwing the proverbial towel in on healthfulness. Instead, practice self-forgiveness and get going again!

Breakfast is the place to front load your day with healthful, nutrient dense choices! The Counsel for Calorie Counting estimates the average American will consume 4,500 calories on Thanksgiving Day, and most of them from fats and sugars. Fasting is not a smart option, since it translates into chemical changes, including an increase in cortisol levels and subsequent increase in blood sugar levels, muscle wasting, and later binging to normalize it all! Instead, deliberate eating throughout the day is critical, and it starts with breakfast. Here’s your 5 Step Thanksgiving SMART EATING PLAN, which emphasizes the nutrients typically lacking later in the day and is centered upon easy foods that can be made ahead.

Sip on warm Green Tea to promote fat burn, to support healthy blood sugar levels, and to boost energy but decrease stress.

STEP TWO – BREAKFAST…a few ideas!

    1. Overnite Oatmeal
    2. Breakfast Cookies
    3. Pumpkin Energy Balls
    4. Vegan Omelet
    5. Sprouted Grain Toast, English Muffin, or Bagel with Nut Butter or Avocado

MAKE a Smoothie or Green Shake. Using my formula for the ideal, nutrient-dense smoothie, you will enjoy a guilt-free, power-loaded drink.

    1. LIQUID: 1 cup water and/or unsweetened almond milk
    2. BINDER: 2 Tbsp Oatmeal or Nut butter
    3. PROTEIN: Large scoop (2-3 Tbsp) protein powder, plant-based
    4. SWEET: 1/2 frozen banana or 2 frozen medjool dates
    5. GREENS: Large handful greens (spinach, kale)
    6. ANTIOXIDANTS: 2 cups frozen berries
    7. HEALTHY FATS: coconut milk/oil, chia/flax seeds, nuts, avocado
    8. COOL: Ice cubes (5-6, or to desired consistency)
    9. OPTIONAL ADDED SWEET: Stevia, maple syrup, honey, agave
    10. OPTIONAL ADDED ENERGY BOOST: maca powder

Sip on Peppermint Tea since the scent of mint helps curb appetite and cravings.
Snack on fresh, brightly colored fruits and raw almonds or walnuts to front load your day with antioxidants, clean protein, and healthy fats.

When you nourish with foods, it’s equally important to balance nutrients out with the formula to absorb them properly. Hydration and calming your nervous system on a highly stressful day are beneficial to keep a solid eating plan in place and to allow your body ample opportunity for assimilating nutrients. Deep breathing combined with lemon water throughout the day are effective techniques to keep a healthy balance. They also serve as effective reminders to stay on track.

Including a nutrient dense smart day of eating is essential to kick off your Thanksgiving Day and your entire Holiday Season off on the right foot…And, get registered for next Health Made Easy program!