The average T-day meal packs a whopping 3,000 to 4,000 calories. Add in second and third helpings and you can end up looking like someone stuffed a pumpkin into the back of your skinny jeans. This year, fend off the holiday flab by making these smart (and not too painful) swaps.
If you're hosting Turkey Day, check out these awesome tips from Katie Lee Joel, otherwise beg Mom or Grandma to skim down the menu with these tips.
Scary fact: The average person packs on 9 to 11 pounds between now and New Year's. Want to get a jumpstart on shedding those pounds? Check out our best weight-loss tips ever and work these fat-burning foods into your diet!
1. The Chubby Choice: Dark Meat Turkey
Three ounces of dark meat (about the size of a deck of cards) contains 165 calories and unhealthy saturated fat.
Slim Swap: White Meat Turkey
Three ounces of white meat contains only 100 calories. Bonus: Lean protein like white meat increases satiety, making you feel fuller longer.
Calories saved: 65
2. The Chubby Choice: Candied Sweet Potato Casserole
Loaded with sugar and marshmallows, this Turkey Day fave can pack up to 430 calories per cup.
Slim Swap: Baked Sweet Potato with Skin
A whole baked sweet potato contains only 180 calories. You'll get all the health benefits of this superspud, like vitamins C and E, beta-carotene, and fiber, without all the excess sugar. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon for a flavor boost.
Calories saved: 250
3. The Chubby Choice: Green Bean Casserole
A serving of green bean casserole is loaded with butter, cream of mushroom soup, cheese, and fried onions. No wonder it racks up 241 calories.
Slim Swap: Steamed Veggies
Steal one cup of steamed green beans (44 calories) or steamed asparagus (40 calories) out of the pot. If plain veggies are too bland for you, drizzle with olive oil and ground pepper. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese for extra flavor without adding a ton of unwanted calories.
Calories saved: 197
4. The Chubby Choice: Spiked Cider
A mug of this holiday cocktail made with apple cider, brandy, and, yes, butter, will cost you 286 calories...and a sugar crash.
Slim Swap: Red Wine
A 5-ounce glass of red wine contains about 100 calories plus higher levels of the healthy antioxidant resveratrol. Plus, it's one of the 10 foods that feed your sex drive.
Calories saved: 186
5. The Chubby Choice: Pecan Pie
One slice of pecan pie can contain anywhere from 500 to 800 calories - ouch!
Slim Swap: Pumpkin Pie
Although pie isn't exactly diet-friendly, who can resist! Pumpkin pie has fewer calories than pecan pie, coming in at 320. Plus, pumpkin is rich in vitamin A and fiber. Be sure to hold the whipped cream, though.
Calories saved: 480
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