With a big feast day in our midst, we wanted to review some of our top holiday tips to keep you sane, smiling and satisfied. We are also sharing few of our favorite Thanksgiving dishes below. Enjoy!

Maintain your normal eating routine. We can promise you this: starving yourself up until the meal, with the intention of saving up your calories, will backfire. Eat a good breakfast and have a snack with protein or light lunch before the feast so you are not famished when exposed to all the holiday food.

Bring a healthy (but supremely tasty) dish. If you are not hosting, offer to bring an appetizer such as fresh vegetables and a rockin’ healthy dip (like this one). It’s likely that others will appreciate this as well, and at the least, you can prove that healthy can be yummy too.

Resist peer pressure. If you need to be on a strict regimen for one reason or another, be prepared for well meaning friends who may tempt you to “have just one drink” or “you must try one of these!” Congratulate yourself for resisting (if that is your choice) and realize that you are taking good care of yourself. If this resonates with you, be sure to read our article on “Eating to Please.”

Manage your portions. When the meal is served, take a minute or two to look over your offerings. Pass on  the foods you can have anytime, but go ahead and take small portions of specialty dishes you may only get to have once or twice a year (Mom’s mashed potatoes, Aunt Robin’s stuffing, cousin Joan’s pecan pie). If you keep your portions reasonable, you can’t go too off track. Simply take a modest spoonful or small piece and savor every bite! Remember – small on serving, long on taste.

Practice conscious eating.  Make sure to taste and appreciate ALL the food you eat. We so often plow through our food and forget to actually taste it. So chew your food slowly and take your time. Sounds simple, but most people in social situations do not do this.

Keep in mind – it’s just one day. If you overdo it a bit, don’t panic! No one day can derail a healthy eating plan unless you let it. Wake up Friday and whip up a smoothie, chia pudding, upgraded oatmeal or another fabulous breakfast and move on with your day – no guilt attached.

Holiday Recipe Roundup

Roasted Turnips n’ Thyme
Harvest Salad

Balsamic Glazed Asparagus
Cranberry Sauce 
Gingerbread Pear Crisp