There are many nutrient rich foods that can make your Thanksgiving meal healthy, and all that much more enjoyable. This holiday, be sure to add these to your menu and rest assured that your meal is both delicious and nutritious.
- Sweet Potatoes: A superfood and a popular Thanksgiving staple, sweet potatoes contain a variety of nutrients. Packed with beta-carotene as well as vitamin A and C; a serving of sweet potato contains 57 calories, two grams of dietary fiber and one grams of protein.  Serve up your favorite, low-calorie sweet potato dish this Thanksgiving and indulge in that extra serving.
- Pumpkin: Another superfood, pumpkin is also packed with beta-carotene. A one cup serving of pumpkin contains just 30 calories, along with one gram of protein and one gram of dietary fiber.  Pumpkin can serve as the perfect substitute for high fat liquids and dairy products in many of your favorite holiday treats.
- Brussels Sprouts: One of those vegetables we often learn to love, Brussels sprouts are a great addition to your Thanksgiving meal. A single serving of Brussels sprouts contains just 38 calories, three grams of dietary fiber and three grams of protein.  Serve up Brussels sprouts this year and add some greens to your menu!
For many Americans, Thanksgiving not only is a time to give thanks, but also serves as the ultimate cheat meal. Even those of us who are vigilant about our diet throughout the year will often overindulge on Thanksgiving. Let’s take a look at some of foods and products you should avoid this holiday.
- High-Fat Dairy Products: According to the American Cancer Society, men who consume lots of high-fat dairy products have a slightly higher chance of developing prostate cancer.  It’s important to keep this in mind year round. Steer clear of dishes that are prepared with high fat-dairy products.
- Refined Sugar:The human body depends upon glucose, a natural sugar, to survive. Glucose occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables and other natural food products. The dietary fibers that are also contained in these foods assist with digestion and overall health. Refined sugar however is often added to processed foods to improve the flavor profile while not adding any of the health benefits associated with fruits and other natural food products.  Keep this in mind as you outline your Thanksgiving menu. Select recipes that contain natural foods and avoid refined sugars whenever possible.
While Thanksgiving is a time to indulge, it is also a time to give thanks for our health. Keep these health tips in mind as you prepare your Thanksgiving feast, and throughout the year. From all of us at 4Kscore, BioReference, and GenPath — we wish you and yours a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
Would you like more tips and information on living a healthy lifestyle? Follow our blog for insights on the health issues that impact you and your loved ones!
- Sweet Potatoes and Yams. Available at https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/nutrition-through-seasons/seasonal-produce/sweet-potatoes-and-yams. (Accessed November 14, 2016).
- Pumpkin. Available at https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/nutrition-through-seasons/seasonal-produce/pumpkin. (Accessed November 14, 2016).
- Brussels Sprouts. Available at https://snaped.fns.usda.gov/nutrition-through-seasons/seasonal-produce/brussels-sprouts. (Accessed November 14, 2016).
- American Cancer Society. Prostate Cancer Risk Factors. Available at http://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostatecancer/detailedguide/prostate-cancer-risk-factors. (Accessed November 14, 2016).
- National Institutes of Health. Sweet Stuff How Sugars and Sweeteners Affect Your Health. Available at https://newsinhealth.nih.gov/issue/oct2014/feature1. (Accessed November 14, 2016).