The Thanksgiving Pregame: Eat for Success

You have a plan—first, you go for the mashed potatoes, making a Close Encounters of the Third Kind-sized mound, topped with Grandma’s famous gravy. Then head for the stuffing, all while giving the pie table side-eye. Most of us have favorite dishes that we long for all year but only indulge around the holidays. But the eternal question remains–to eat breakfast the day of a big holiday meal or abstain? We asked a registered dietician Bethany Frazier, aka The Kansas City Dietician, for her advice.

“One of the worst things that you can do is to skip your meal earlier in the day, especially if you’re eating later in the day. For one, that will make you really hungry, but it’s also bad from a blood sugar management standpoint. We don’t want to be cranky when we sit down to a meal with family and friends,” says Frazier.

Instead, she recommends sticking to your normal eating plan, whatever that is. That helps to set the expectation that the holiday meal is a special meal that is to be enjoyed with family, but it’s not one that you should feel sick after eating. Keeping your regular routine and expectation means that you can enjoy special foods without eating an increased volume of food.

For breakfast, Frazier advises a balanced blend of protein (eggs, yogurt), healthy fat (avocado, olive oil), and healthy carbs and fiber (fruit, whole-grain toast). And if you’re not a traditional breakfast food fan, never fear. Any food that hits your macros is fair game, including Thanksgiving leftovers. Over easy eggs on top of roasted turkey breast and cranberry sauce? Don’t mind if I do.