Say Goodbye to your Food Coma at Thanksgiving!

Autumn is definitely in the air… Cooler nights, longer shadows and the leaves are starting to change colour. Thanksgiving is just around the corner! With a little know-how, you can satisfy your desire for traditional favorites and still indulge in a guilt-free Thanksgiving feast. After all… being stuffed is a good idea but only if you are a turkey!

Here are 6 Thanksgiving survival tips:

  1. Do not skip breakfast or any normal meals/snacks on Thanksgiving Day. I know you have a lot to get done on this day and you are anticipating eating a large meal for dinner. But it is essential that you kick start your metabolism with good nutrients that will provide you the stamina to get through this busy day. Besides, you do not want to be starving by the time dinner arrives; as this is a sure way of over eating.
  2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Not drinking enough water can be easily disguised as hungry cues, which can be dangerous when you have a big meal ahead of you. Drinking water can fill you up and help to keep your portion sizes under control.
  3. Lighten up! Try making your traditional recipes a little lighter by using low sodium chicken broth in the gravy and to base the turkey. Try plain Greek yogurt in the mash potatoes, any dips and casseroles to benefit from the good bacterial cultures. Use sugar substitutes such as stevia and pureed fruit in place of oil in baked goods.
  4. Pay attention to your plating. Use a smaller plate because larger plates lead to larger food intake. Limit yourself to one serving only, besides second helpings always taste better as leftovers the next day. Try dividing your plate into: 25% of protein, 25% of starches/grains, and 50% of vegetables.
  5. Let the body and brain connection catch up. Once dinner is done, it is suggested to wait 20 minutes until you indulge in anything else, such as second helpings and/or dessert. This will allow your brain to recognise how full you really are and hopefully avoid over indulging and the potential food coma!
  6. Walk it off! How about instead of taking a nap after the feast, go for a walk around the block. Breathing in some fresh air and getting the blood pumping can help your digestion.
      
Truth or Myth? Does turkey actually make us sleepy?

Turkey seems to get blamed for being the main culprit for fatigue after the Thanksgiving feast. Believe or not, it has been wrongfully accused!

Tryptophan is an amino acid found in turkey that can help increase the production of serotonin and melatonin which helps you to sleep.

Here’s the truth… Tryptophan works best on an empty stomach, which is not the case after Thanksgiving. There is roughly the same amount of tryptophan in chicken, pork and cheese. So technically speaking, you should not feel more tired after eating turkey than you would after eating chicken or pork.

So why do we feel tired after our Thanksgiving feast? We can blame the following components:

  • Over eating – It takes a lot of energy to digest such a large meal. When blood is directed away from other organs like the nervous system, you may feel tired and want a nap.
  • Alcohol consumption – Alcohol depresses the central nervous system, so if you are enjoying festive beverages be sure to feel sleepy afterwards.
  • Higher fat indulgence – Fats slow down the digestive process, which means they take a lot of energy to breakdown. This localises blood flow to the digestive system to help with this process, causing fatigue.
  • Carb-loading – Carbohydrates make tryptophan more available to the brain, which is why when loading up on potatoes, bread and pie in one meal makes us drowsy.
  Try this grain-free, dairy-free and refined sugar-free Pumpkin Pie recipe:

Ingredients
For the crust:

  • 1 (15 oz.) can of pumpkin or 2 cups of homemade pureed pumpkin
  • 3 tbsp. coconut oil, + extra to grease pie pan
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon

For the filling:

  • 1 cup almonds or pecans, finely ground in blender until flour like
  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ cup of honey or stevia (Note: honey holds better.)
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. each of cloves, ginger and nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. natural vanilla
  • Up to 1/3 cup coconut milk to thin

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Grease pie pan with coconut oil and mix all crust ingredients by hand in a bowl.
  3. Press crust into bottom/sides of pie pan. Place in oven for 10-15 minutes; it should barely start to brown.
  4. Combine all the filling ingredients (except the coconut milk) and mix thoroughly. It should be smooth and spreadable. Add coconut milk if needed to thin slightly.
  5. Pour and smooth the filling over the crust and bake for an hour or until center is no longer jiggly.

What’s pumpkin pie without a whipped cream topping?
Remove all the coconut cream from 1 (14 oz.) can of coconut milk. Mix with a hand mixer until stiff peaks form (7-8 mins), add stevia and natural vanilla to taste and mix for 1 minute. Scoop on top of pie slice and add some chopped pecans.

 

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© 2019 Koru Nutrition Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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© 2019 Koru Nutrition Inc. All Rights Reserved.