Image Credit: Google Images
We’ve all done it. Thanksgiving Day comes along and we spend it with family and friends. We enjoy ourselves prior to the main meal and then sit down at the table, to eat our dinner. Choices are many and supply is unlimited. After some time, the meal is over and dessert is served. Once again, choices are many. Then it happens. There always seems to be one or two people in the group (maybe you!) that have to take a nap shortly after their meal! Most start feeling sluggish, stuffed, and tired. Many experience brain fog and/or start getting crabby!
Is it the tryptophan in the turkey that triggers all of this? Do we consume such large amounts of this amino acid at dinner that it’s the cause of all of the above?
Probably not. What most likely DOES happen is that we overeat, triggering a whole host of negative bodily effects. These effects can range anywhere from triggering abnormal insulin responses to not enough enzymatic activity in the gut to help digest all the excess food. As a result, the above effects occur AND weight gain ensues. Sure, you may be thinking at this point, that it’s only during the holidays that you overeat and experience the above. However, it’s worth keeping in mind that overeating at every holiday, several times a year, for many years, will result in unintended weight gain!
What can you do to avoid overeating this Thanksgiving? Read on to find out.
Skip the food you don’t really care for.
Most people have their traditional favorite Thanksgiving foods. And while there may be a few out there that believe they love everything Thanksgiving. When it comes to food served, you may be surprised to find that you may actually not really care for some if you're paying attention. For example, the mashed potatoes that you’re aunt makes AND that you eat every year may not be as good this year. Or, you’re other aunt’s famous stuffing may not be as delicious to you as it once was due to changing tastes. Many people put a little bit of everything on their plates Thanksgiving Day, mostly because it’s just there, readily available and a habit. Try and fine tune you’re favorites this year and pass on you’re not so favorite ones. You’re body and taste buds will thank you later.
Ask for a smaller plate.
Sure, everyone has the same dinner plate, but the research has shown that the bigger the plate, the bigger the portions, which make for bigger consumption. Use a smaller plate, and once empty refill if you’d like. By having smaller portions in front of you, the odds of you mindlessly overeating while discussing politics, for example, will be greatly reduced.
Chew and don’t speak with your mouth full.
I see it every year. There’s always one or two people that have to say what they want to say, at that moment, regardless if there’s food in their mouth. Not only can this be extremely bothersome to some, but also greatly contributes to overeating. It’s impossible to remain mindful of what you’re eating if you’re busy talking rather than chewing.
Wear tight fitting clothes.
Comical for some but effective. There’s something to be said about the ability of yoga pants to help distance yourself from any unwanted weight gain. If you’re wearing loose fitting clothes on Thanksgiving Day expect yourself to overeat due to comfort. By wearing fitted clothes, you can more mindfully engage you’re body’s response to your meal and remain more mindful of your body as a whole.
Keep in mind that food is meant to energize us and promote vitality and NOT induce a coma. Hopefully, by keeping the above tips in mind you can avoid overeating this year.
Do you have any additional tips? Please share below!
Wishing you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving!