The Anti-Healthy Thanksgiving Post

There are a lot of blog posts and articles out there right now about how to enjoy your holiday meal in a healthy way, or how to stay healthy while enjoying your holidays. This is not one of those.

I’m not saying that there’s anything wrong with that type of post or article, in fact, I think they can be quite helpful, and I even wrote one recently. If you really do want tips about staying healthy while enjoying your holidays, you can read it here.

This post is about forgetting being “healthy” for one day and just enjoying Thanksgiving. I’m not saying that I’m going to stuff myself silly and drink three bottles of wine tomorrow, but I am saying that I’m going to enjoy the day without stressing about too many carbs, too much sugar, and too little exercise. Yes, I’ll probably make a point to take a walk after eating dinner, but besides that, it’s just going to be a day to enjoy good food and good company.

Holidays are special days. As long as you don’t treat every day like a holiday, it is perfectly OK to enjoy them when they come! There’s a difference between letting yourself be free and eating/drinking the things you love on Thanksgiving and other holidays, and letting yourself go buck wild and eating everything in sight for two months because “it’s the holidays”.

Define your holidays, maintain your healthy lifestyle in between them, and allow yourself to enjoy the special days and all of the delicious goodies that come with them. In fact, I’ll be eating two Thanksgiving dinners tomorrow, with two different families. Am I stressed out because I’m going to be facing a lot of food (a lot of it unhealthy)? Nope. Am I going to count macros/calories so that I don’t eat too much? Nope. Am I going to eat all the pie? Yep.

400And I’m OK with that. 

Normally, I strongly suggest that people pay close attention to what and how much they eat and to keeping macronutrient ratios within a general range.  I preach moderation, self control, and being mindful. However, once or twice a year, I really think that it’s ok to let you guard down. It’s ok to eat whatever you want without feeling guilty about it. It’s ok to eat the stuffing. And the pie.

For one day a year, it’s ok to feel so full that you have to undo the top button of your pants (come on, we’ve all done it). For one day a year, it’s ok to be free of all of your food fears and neuroses and just enjoy it. Enjoy the family time, the turkey, as many side dishes as you want, and your favorite desserts. The key word here is to enjoy it. If you’ve eaten so much that you stop enjoying it, just stop. Savor what you do have, because if you don’t want to turn into a lump on the couch, it’s time to go back to your healthy lifestyle following the holiday.

Don’t worry about how to make it “healthy”. Don’t worry about how to make your holiday meal fit into your diet. Just eat it, enjoy it, and move on the next day. We’re on this earth to live, right? Sometimes you’ve just gotta learn to enjoy the present moments without worrying. Just be conscious of resuming your healthy habits once the holiday is over, and you’ll be golden.

Now go ahead, just eat.

Happy Thanksgiving to my US readers, and to everyone else, happy Thursday! What are your favorite dishes to enjoy on this holiday? Do you ever feel guilty for eating too much on holidays? Do you follow your diet rules on holidays or just enjoy? 

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15 thoughts on “The Anti-Healthy Thanksgiving Post

  1. Nope I eat. No Guilt. Just love and happiness and enjoying being with my family. Last year my hubby andI were in Afghanistan and traveling to Thailand. We had Subway at Bagram because the DFAC’s were overflowing and we were not into waiting in the long lines. This year I’m preparing to do what I vowed never to do, fly on Thanksgiving weekend in the USA. Ugh. Today I ran, tomorrow I eat, and Friday – I will hit the gym.

  2. Nicely written. Everyone has problem with bashin themselves at holiday. And later on they end up jogging for hours, and do themselves even worse. They burn some fat and the burn muscle. A th the end they end up looking puffy (i hope i wrote that right). Its a meal or two and its not going to harm you, you need some changes in your diet, you cant eat chicken &Broccoli 365days a year, you just cant, the body gets used to that.

    • Good point, not only should you not feel guilty about indulging on the holiday, but trying to “run it off” is just silly. I really hate those articles that say how long you have to run to burn off a certain food — the body just doesn’t work like that.

  3. I also completely agree with this post. True “health” means moderation. Striking the balance between being predominantly health conscience while giving yourself permission to enjoy the holidays and fantastically buttery grub. Thank you for being so candid!

  4. I completely agree with you. I generally keep my diet in check, but think you should enjoy yourself on holidays and vacations. Otherwise, you can’t start to feel deprived and it might backfire. It’s how you eat on a regular basis that matters more than the occasional feast. We have to enjoy ourselves sometimes too!

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