How to Host a Thanksgiving Dinner with Style and Portion Control

by | Nov 14, 2011 | Health Habits, Nutrition Support, Uncategorized

Right before you know it, another year has passed and one of the most awaited holidays has come once again, it’s Thanksgiving Day! A wonderful time spent with friends and family to celebrate the things we are grateful for and show appreciation to those dear to us. Indeed, one of the best gatherings that the whole family enjoys.

And so, when everyone is around, we tend to serve abundant food and drinks. Not to mention the tradition of having a big juicy roasted turkey as the center piece! For most of us, it’s better to end up with more food rather than short of dishes to serve.

For those who are watching their weight, it’s a struggle to survive such holiday without too much calorie intake. As much as it is stressful to prepare for the host of the dinner too! But no sweat, Precise Portions has come up with the following planning tips and ideas to help you and your family to have a healthy Thanksgiving Day.

Planning way ahead is the key to have a successful and stress-free Thanksgiving dinner.

And having a checklist on hand will definitely do the trick, and it should include the following:

1. Head Count

getting an early number of confirmed guests helps in planning the menu in advance. You’ll feel much better knowing that you have at least one part of the day under control.

2. Simple Menu

simplify the menu and this will help you save cost, time and energy. Just a few Thanksgiving regulars with other healthy dishes will definitely let you get through the night.

3. Grocery List

make a shopping list at least 2 weeks in advance, so you wouldn’t have to keep running back and forth to the grocery for last minute shopping. It saves you time and energy.

4. Seek Help

it’s not a bad idea to ask friends or family members to participate in the preparation. And with Potluck becoming a trend nowadays, you can request your guests to bring their favorite side dish so you do not have to prepare everything, and that would give you time to join the rest of the activities. With everyone chipping in it will quickly make the task less daunting.

5. Motif and Table Setting

choose your motif and buy dinnerware and other non-perishable items earlier. Watching out for the end of season sales is often a good option. Set the dinner table in advance so you’ll be relaxed before the evening comes and just concentrate in entertaining your guests. Use clean linens and decorate it in the simplest way but with elegance. Surely you would want to impress your guests, now is the time to be creative!

Another concern during the Holiday Season is the waistline. To most of us Thanksgiving would also mean abundance in calorie laden foods. We must plan the menu wisely and choose only the healthy ingredients in preparing the food. When hosting, you do have control over these things.

Listed below are some healthy ideas and portion control reminders to help us keep up

with good nutrition and calorie management during the Holidays:

1. Always eat breakfast and regular meals

Don’t skip breakfast or any meal during the day. If you do, it would only lead you to overeating when Thanksgiving dinner comes.

2. Go Natural

Opt for whole foods instead of processed, just think of the fat, sugar and sodium content many of these foods have. And why buy when you can easily make great, whole tasting foods from scratch? Low fat gravies, dressings, dips and sauces can be made ahead of time. Take the credit and have it your style.

3. Go for Greens

limit intake of starchy vegetables and go for leafy greens instead – it makes a healthy starter or side and will save you from those unwanted extra pounds. .

4. Color Your Plate

By putting different colors to your plate you will get the chance to taste each dish, satisfy your cravings and be properly nourished.

5. Cook healthy

choose healthy recipes in preparing your dishes and use fresh ingredients and whole food whenever possible.

6. Go easy on salt, fat, and sugar.

You can still create savory dishes by using fresh herbs and spices. For desserts use sugar substitutes like Splenda or Stevia to cut down the calories from carbs.

7. Serve water

by drinking a glass of water before the meal you and your guests will  have a feeling of fullness, before the main course is served.

8. Serve in smaller serving dishes

this will encourage smaller portions (including dessert).

9. Eat slowly

It is wise to not go for seconds, but if you can’t resist the urge – again, Go for the Greens!

10. Control yourself

Skip the part where everyone makes “Holidays” a reason for overeating. For moderately active people the recommended Daily Calorie Budget is only 2,000. If you don’t control yourself you can go as high as 4,500 calories. Using Precise Portions dinnerware system will save you the trouble and help you together with your family and friends to practice portion control even during the holidays.

11. Remember there’s always room for leftovers

you don’t have to finish everything that will burden your stomach. There is enough space in your freezer for leftovers. Just think about the menu for the next day where you can use these leftover dishes.

At the end of the day you must come to realize that true meaning of Thanksgiving Day

is not in the abundance of food that is served but the act of sharing your food to your friends and loved ones as a way of showing your gratitude to them.

And successful Thanksgiving hosts  good planners, accept help when being offered, stay in control, and know the concept of healthy eating. They initiate it by serving healthy dishes using portion sized plates like the Precise Portions Dinnerware System.

We at Precise Portions encourage you to host a healthy Thanksgiving dinner with a special offer!