“This vs That” Thanksgiving Edition

Turkey, apple pie, delicious sides, oh my! The holidays are upon us and that means the Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys are on national TV. And, whether we like it or not, we may be called upon to create feasts for those all around us – but grandma’s Thanksgiving turkey, delicious as it might be, may not be the healthiest option out there. And let’s be honest – if you tell the family you’ve got a diet option at the Thanksgiving dinner table, you might be laughed out of the room.

That is unless, of course, you can keep a little secret or two (don’t go spilling the beans again, Aunt Carla).

Here’s the thing: You can actually make some of your Thanksgiving favorites a bit healthier, and no one will even notice. And no, that’s not a lame infomercial line; it’s the truth! Here are a few ways to satisfy even the most ardent flavor fanatics, without them even noticing they’re doing right by their health at the same time.

Turkey in the oven vs. turkey in the fryer.

A normal-ish 3.5 ounce serving of turkey, when deep fried, has 190 calories and 11 grams of fat. The oven roasted version has 165 calories and just 7 grams of fat. Not a bad start, right? Well, go ahead and remove the skin, and now you’re down to 140 calories and 3.5 grams of fat. Hey, you may not get that far, but you can already see there’s a nice improvement in calorie and fat content just be skipping the fryer. It’s probably less of a safety hazard too.

Bye bye sweet potato casserole, hello roasted sweet potato with cinnamon.

Don’t we all love sweet potato casserole? Duh. Of course we do. But once you add in brown sugar, butter and maybe some pecans, you could be looking at over 300 calories in a serving. However, there is a way to cut that back without losing the sweet, aromatic parts you love. Sweet potatoes with cinnamon. An entire cup of sweet potato is under 115 calories, and a hearty half tablespoon of cinnamon is just an extra 10 calories. Boom.

Pre-game…with tea and cayenne pepper?

Don’t worry, we haven’t gone completely crazy. If you don’t think cayenne pepper belongs at the Thanksgiving table, you’re not crazy either. But did you know that if you use a dash of cayenne pepper in a glass of tea, for example, you can help tame your appetite and boost metabolism? Not a bad thing when you’re planning to eat a big meal. And not a bad way to take your tea on any day, for that matter.

As always, our job is to empower and encourage our Youfit family to enjoy life – and a favorite holiday meal – but provide some tips to change it up…. or not! To learn more about Youfit Health Clubs and find the nearest Youfit location, please visit youfit.com.