A Healthy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate family, to enjoy their company, and to be grateful for everything you have. And then there’s the added bonus of alllll the yummy food that is there! But, it can be somewhat difficult to try to manage all of the overwhelming amounts of food with wrestling the want to be healthy. I want to share how I personally have found a decent balance of treating myself + still feeling my best at Thanksgiving. That being said- if you don’t even want to think about eating healthy tomorrow- don’t stress it!! DO WHAT MAKES YOU FEEL YOUR BEST!

I wasn’t going to write a post about this because I hate the idea of people comparing how they feel/what they do to what I do. But at the end of the day- I want to share my personal experience and tips to hopefully help someone out there who feels similarly to how I do.

What the heck do I even eat?!

So let’s get into it. Thanksgiving used to be almost more stressful to me than fun. I typically eat a pretty healthyish diet of proteins, plants, and whole grains. I’ve always stressed about what the heck I’m going to eat at Thanksgiving. I like to eat healthy not really for vanity reasons (because let’s be honest- for a lot of us that plays into it a bit) but because I genuinely feel better eating healthy.

When Thanksgiving rolls around, it’s one day spent with family I don’t see often and I don’t really want to spend it feeling horrible from what I ate. In the past, I have felt so bloated and miserable from what I’ve eaten it ruined the entire day for me.

One thing is- food should NEVER make you feel guilty and that is not my intention behind this post. If you want to eat a second piece of pie- GO FOR IT!! I am simply sharing a few tips and tricks that make me feel a little better throughout the day but by no means am I saying don’t treat yourself or deprive yourself.


  1. I like to get some type of exercise in the morning of Thanksgiving. I know I know- who wants to be THAT person haha. Last year it was a Turkey Trot with Eli and his brother, sometimes it’s a long walk, sometimes it’s a quick strength workout in my bedroom. I like to stay in a normal workout routine and move my body in some way. Ask a family member who maybe you don’t see that often if they want to take a morning walk with you. Get some fresh air, exercise, and family time in 🙂
  2. Eat a breakfast. I know a lot of people may disagree with this but I still eat a normal size breakfast before Thanksgiving. For one- I’d be starving by noon if I didn’t. I think filling up on a good healthy breakfast keeps me from being hangry by the time the Thanksgiving meal is served.
  3. Bring an easy, healthy meal you know you’ll enjoy. If you’re heading somewhere else for Thanksgiving- bring a really simple meal with! I always bring a simple salad packed with fall goodies! It doesn’t have to be complicated at all- the one I bring I make in less than 10 minutes and it’s not that expensive to make. Then I know I have some greens to eat along with the turkey and stuffing.
  4. Eat mindfully. Now this one is a work in progress for me- I’ll be honest. I am a fast eater so slowing down to eat mindfully isn’t natural to me. I heard this technique on a podcast once and it truly is so helpful. Slow down and truly appreciate the food you have in front of you rather than scarfing it all down in a few bites and moving on to the next.
  5. DON’T DEPRIVE YOURSELF! I can’t say this enough- food shouldn’t make you feel guilty. Food shouldn’t have that kind of power of us…but it does unfortunately. I’ve found if I set a specific limit to sweets or carbs or whatever- I waste so much energy thinking about what I “can’t” have. So- if you want an extra piece of pie- go for it. Mindfully eat it and enjoy it. I’ve found that pausing to think for a moment- “do I actually want this”- helps me gauge whether or not to eat it. Notice I said WANT there- I’m not talking in terms of need because I can always justify why I don’t need it and then the guilt comes back in. If I truly want it, it will make my soul happy, I go for it.
  6. Finally, focus on the real reason behind Thanksgiving. Sure, the food is amazing and it’s fun to get hyped for food you only get once a year. But truly thinking about it in terms of what Thanksgiving is- a time to be thankful for all the blessings you have in your life. The fact that you’re gathered with your loved ones, eating food that so many people don’t have access to. I don’t want to end this on a negative note but shifting my perspective always helps me. For those of us able to celebrate with our families- we are luckier than so many in this world.

All in all- remember it’s one day. One day of ‘unhealthy’ doesn’t change your life the same way a day of eating healthy doesn’t. Life is short. The holidays only come once a year and not to be morbid but you never know when this may be your last holiday with a family member. Trust me- try your hardest not to waste these precious days stressing about something as insignificant as a piece of pie.

I love this community so much and I am wishing you the happiest of Thanksgivings!




pink and red sweater in front of trees.