Dos and Don’ts for Filling Your Thanksgiving Plate

Dos and Don'ts for Filling Your Plate

I know you’re probably going to eat more on Thanksgiving than you would on most Thursdays. And, I understand. It’s one of my favorite holidays too! I want to eat all my favorites (stuffing, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie…), but I also don’t want to wake up the next morning and feel like I’ve undone my progress. Of course, if you’ve been exercising and eating right, one day won’t undo all the work you’ve done. But, as we head into winter, it’s easy to fall off the horse and really struggle to get back on. So, with that in mind, I snapped these photos during 21 Day Fix-creator Autumn Calabrese’s video shoot to help you plate your Thanksgiving meal.

If you’re looking for delicious and healthy recipes, check out the brand new cooking show, FIXATE, from  and her brother, chef Bobby Calabrese. The two have put together an incredible menu of Fix-approved Thanksgiving recipes that are healthy versions of your favorites. From Green Bean Casserole and Cranberry Sauce to stuffing and Pumpkin Whoopie Pies, they’ve got you covered.


The Typical Plate
Honestly, this is kind of what it looks like when I usually eat Thanksgiving dinner. But, after watching Autumn’s video, I learned where I was going all kinds of wrong. First off, where are the greens? And, secondly, this plate is filled with so high in carbs and sugar, it’s no wonder I always want to nap after dinner.
Unhealthy Thanksgiving plate

Our Registered Dietician, Ani Aratounians weighed in on my typical Thanksgiving plate. “It’s high in carbs and there’s lot of sugar and fat. Especially saturated fat. There’s butter everywhere and hardly any fiber. After eating this plate, you’ll feel stuffed and bloated.” And this doesn’t even take into consideration the pie. Or the wine. Or seconds…or thirds.


The Revised Thanksgiving Plate

One easy way to totally redo your Thanksgiving plate (and still have all your favorites) is to start with the green veggies. Put the green beans and the salad on your plate first. Then, add the turkey (aim for the the skinless pieces if you can find them), and then add on your other favorites.
Healthy Thanksgiving plate

The calories aren’t low, but they’re much more reasonable than the first plate. Aratounians’s thoughts on this plate were much more positive. “This is much higher in vitamin and mineral content, and antioxidants. Overall, this is much more balanced for your blood sugar with the protein and fiber balancing out sugar content. And, I can’t help but notice that it’s a much prettier plate!” She recommends, if you are going to go for seconds (and really, who isn’t), go for the greens and protein (again, ideally, without skin).

I hope that this comparison will help you come Thanksgiving! Let me know, will you consider trying the “revised plate” approach?


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  1. Valerie Ferguson said:

    Not out of the question to consider the revised plate 😉 No stuffing will be tough, but it does look yummy!

  2. danisa mishima said:

    i dont eat most of it, lol. i eat tofu, lots of veggies, some mashed potatoes, and then later, some dessert. 😀 (i dont eat turkey, sweet potatoes, stuffing or cranberry sauce.. ~_~

  3. Jen L. said:

    Several of my guests are actually on the 21 day fix eating plan! We are all planning to measure our meals using our containers. 🙂

  4. Caleb G. said:

    @At A Loss 68 it may not, but it definitely is a motivator killer. Being the start of the holiday season, it can all come crashing down starting here. Being proactive in nutrition and fitness during thanksgiving can set the tone for December.