Written By: Jeneene Connelly
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, which means it is time to give thanks and gather with our loved ones!
Food is one of the most important traditions during Thanksgiving, with many families selecting dishes like turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing and green beans for their meal. Other families incorporate dishes from their family or cultural heritage for this special occasion.
Common Threads has come up with three simple ways you can make your Thanksgiving a healthy one, regardless of how you celebrate.
Trim the Turkey:
Let’s start off with the most important component of the traditional Thanksgiving meal, the turkey! Did you know that the white meat of a turkey is healthier than the dark meat? Dark meat, found in the legs and thighs of a turkey, contains more fat and calories than white meat; the white meat of a turkey has more protein, vitamins, and minerals that you need daily!
Looking for a healthy turkey recipe, but don’t want to go through the trouble of making a large turkey? Check out our Herb Roasted Turkey Breast recipe!
Swap to Sweet Potatoes
While regular potatoes and sweet potatoes have very similar nutritional benefits, sweet potatoes contain antioxidants that help prevent stress and inflammation in your body. They also have a lower glycemic index, which means they help balance your blood sugar levels.
This year, try swapping out regular mashed potatoes with our Mashed Sweet Potatoes recipe! Or if you’re looking for a sweet and healthy dessert, try our Sweet Potato Pie Bars !
Cut the Casserole
Green bean casserole can take a lot of time to prepare, among all of the other traditional Thanksgiving side dishes. On top of the lengthy cooking time, green bean casserole typically contains an abundance of unwanted fat and high amounts of sodium. For example, just one can of creamed mushroom soup, typically used in a green bean casserole recipe, contains 22 grams of fat and 2,190 mg of sodium. That’s 95 percent of your recommended daily intake of sodium!
Instead of spending your time making another casserole, swap it out with our fresh and tasty String Beans recipe that will be a healthier alternative side dish for the family!
Bottom Line: To make your Thanksgiving meal healthier, choose lean protein, swap your side dishes with options that are high in fiber and antioxidants, and opt to use fresh, whole foods whenever possible!
For more delicious Holiday recipes, visit our Recipe Gallery.
From all of us at Common Threads, we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!
- Red and Purple Coloured Potatoes as a Significant Antioxidant Source in Human Nutrition – A Review (Czech Academy of Agricultural Sciences)
- Glycemic Index Research and GI News (University of Sydney)
- Green Bean Casserole (USDA)
- Cream of Mushroom Soup (USDA)