This week we will continue our discussion about Thanksgiving and address how to navigate the myriad of desserts without completely abandoning all efforts to be healthy!
If there is a day to give yourself a bit of a break on dieting, Thanksgiving is your day! But you don’t have to completely blow it – it doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing. There is no doubt that the dessert table is irresistible. From pies to cakes to fudge and cookies. But by this time, no doubt you are sufficiently satiated, so wise and moderate choices would be helpful in the hours and days to come as your body tackles the job of absorbing and metabolizing the Thanksgiving fare.
If you are not hosting, you usually contribute to the meal. These days, so many people are cognizant of their health so this could be your opportunity to provide a choice which might be non-traditional yet delicious and which may become a topic of conversation!
While perusing recipes, make note of the sugar content. This is the most common culprit, which when added to food, counters the benefits of other ingredients. Store-bought pastries are particularly high in sugar in its unhealthy forms, i.e. High-fructose corn syrup, which has been shown to lead to heart disease and diabetes. In addition, “sugar-free” is not necessarily a good alternative because an artificial chemical is substituting – the detriments of which are numerous.
If possible, home-baked goods are preferable as the amounts and qualities of the ingredients are modifiable. If for, example, a recipe calls for one cup of sugar, try cutting it to ¾ cup or even 7/8 cup. Or, try a natural alternative like stevia or xylitol or coconut sugar. Other sweeteners such as honey and molasses are also great alternatives but alter the liquid content and as such, require recipe adjustments.
Fats are another issue. Store bought pastries typically contain trans-fats (hydrogenated oils) due to their more favorable cost and the added shelf-life they provide. Saturated fats such as butter and coconut oil are preferable for baking because they withstand high heat, maintaining their natural form and are therefore more easily metabolized by the body.
So, the best suggestion is to bake one or two recipes of your own desire – somethings you are excited about for not only your own consumption but to share and discuss with the other guests. You might be surprised who might be interested in what you have to say! When you approach the dessert table, head to those things and reserve the other sweets to fill in the small spaces left!
Given all of this, most import for all of us is to be thankful for all that we have – friends and family. This is the healthiest part of Thanksgiving. If you splurge on this special day it is far from being the end of the world. Black Friday is waiting for you to burn off the calories at the mall!
We would be remiss if we did not remind you about our commitment to your health. And our topics on healthy eating at Thanksgiving would not be complete without mentioning Gastrotene ®, developed to support and maintain gastrointestinal tract integrity and promote peak function.* It is the only GI health support product that contains 2-Beta Coxatene®, a new class of nutritional ingredient. This all-natural growth factor & herbal blend ingredient provides the right balance and support for healthy immune signaling and stem cell activation, helping support your body’s ability to create new epithelial lining for a healthy gut.*
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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Thanksgiving gives us a good excuse to discuss the benefits of turkey – with the idea that perhaps it is worth considering making it more of a dietary staple throughout the year rather than mainly reserving it for this special day. As with all food, the source of the turkey determines how good it tastes and how nutritious it is.