Hoboken Health Corner: November 2011

Make smart food choices for Thanksgiving!

By Leslie Goldstein, RD

Despite some that put up their Christmas decorations already, Thanksgiving is rounding the corner!

There are many ways to stay healthy during the holiday while still enjoying yourself and having the festive foods that you enjoy each year Below are some ideas on how to make a healthier holiday for you and your family. The average American will gain approximately 1 pound between Thanksgiving and New Years – don’t let this happen to you! Besides, Thanksgiving should be about family not just food!

  • Heading to your parents/grandparents or in-laws for the day? Make sure not to arrive on an empty stomach. Eat a small, low fat breakfast in the morning such as fruit or low fat yogurt before heading to the party. This will help you to not ravage the table of appetizers when you arrive later in the day. It will also give you energy to mingle with friends and family when you arrive!
  • While the food is being passed around the table or you are approaching the buffet, take half of what your eyes are craving. This allows you the opportunity to taste all the food and go back for seconds of the foods you enjoyed without being too full afterward by having a “normal sized portion.”
  • Need a gift to bring to the party? Try bringing a vegetable appetizer platter with low fat hummus or a fruit platter for dessert. This way you know there will be something healthy that you can enjoy as well. Preparing in advance? Order a basket online at Edible Arrangements at 84 Washington Street. Garden of Eden at 226 Washington Street also prepares fruit and vegetable baskets.
  • Practice food safety! You don’t want to get or give food poisoning to your family and friends! When preparing the turkey make sure it cooks to a temperature of 165 degrees F. Don’t leave food out of the fridge for longer than 2 hours. After this point, food enters the “temperature danger zone” where cold food becomes warm and hot food becomes cool. This allows bacteria to form. If chilling a warm dish, place it in the refrigerator don’t leave it on the counter!
  • Entertaining for the holiday with vegetarian or vegan guests? Prepare a meatless turkey that others may enjoy as well! Most varieties are high in fiber and protein, and low in saturated fat; although, also high in sodium.
  • Fit in some exercise. Early in the morning take a family walk. Also, many towns have 5K or 10K walks/runs on Thanksgiving and are a great way to get some fresh air and feel better about eating a bit more than usual. It’s also a great family activity. Find a race nearby www.active.com
  • Lastly, don’t stress! The holidays can be fun, but also stressful. Try to hydrate, exercise and take care of your health.

About Leslie Goldstein, RD

Leslie Goldstein is a Registered Dietitian (RD) practicing in North Bergen and Hoboken, New Jersey. Leslie is an avid exerciser who combines her nutrition knowledge and passion with motivational support in counseling to help her clients make lifestyle changes. Leslie specializes in weight management, general wellness, Diabetes, bariatric surgery, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Leslie accepts most major insurances. www.healthystepnutrition.com 8100 Kennedy Blvd. North Bergen, NJ 07047 Ph: 201-378-3287 Email: LeslieGoldsteinRD@gmail.com

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