We made it through Thanksgiving, and the holiday season continues!  Stay on track with your healthy lifestyle goals AND enjoy yourself throughout the holidays with this fresh perspective from Dietitian Nutritionist, Nicole Moretta.

How A Dietitian Handles Holiday Meals

As soon as the holidays come around people tend to put off healthy eating and physical activity until after the holiday season.  But why not continue with those healthy habits AND celebrate the holiday season. 

People always ask if I skip all my meals on Thanksgiving and eat one big dinner or they ask if I skip dessert.  My response is, sorry to disappoint you but I don’t do either of those things.  I make sure to have a balanced breakfast and lunch prior to a holiday meal and if weather allows, I take a walk with my kids.  Not because I’m going to overeat later but because it’s important for me to do that with my family. I have 2 suggestions for staying on track.   


  1. Do not skip meals- Stick to your normal routine during the day.  If you have the day off, do something good for the soul.  Visit a friend, volunteer for a meal delivery service or a shelter, go for a walk, workout, or if you really feel you need sleep, get some restorative sleep, which is not the same binging Netflix.   
  2. Eat the things that mean something to you.  Our family staples are turkey, mashed potatoes, corn, stuffing, and gravy, plus a few extra things.  For dessert we usually have 3-4 different pies, chocolates, cookies, and cheesecake.  So, while I could eat all those things I don’t.  I pick my favorites and I enjoy them.  I can eat mashed potatoes and corn any day of the week but my Aunts only makes their stuffing once a year so I’d rather enjoy a little more of that and a little less of the other stuff.  And for dessert, I do a full inventory of the pies and I might get a sample of something but my Mom’s famous cheesecake it always on my plate.  She only makes it twice a year so it’s a special treat for me.   
  3. Another important tip is to enjoy your company.  It might be family or friends or animals or just peace and quiet at home but enjoy that.  The day should be about gratitude, not food.  Yes, food is part of that but shouldn’t be the focus. 


Happy Holidays!


- Nicole Moretta, MS, RD, CDN

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