By COSHANDRA DILLARD
This is not a typical health column about Thanksgiving eating.
A perk of being at a healthy weight or working toward optimal wellness is that you can afford now and again to indulge if you quickly get back on track.
I’m not suggesting that people forgo a healthy weight-loss regimen for a day of gluttonous Thanksgiving feasting, but as many trainers and dietitians note, people tend to stick to a diet when they don’t feel deprived.
The many people who are taking part in the recently launched Lighten Up East Texas weight-loss challenge may feel as though they have to stick to a strict diet during this holiday in order to possibly win a new car by losing at least 5 percent of their body weight.
The point is to understand when and why to indulge and, most importantly, when to stop indulging. Don’t use boredom and stress as an excuse to overeat unhealthy things. However, eating a good meal as part of cultural celebrations that remind us of our blessings and serve to reward ourselves for a job well done is acceptable, when done occasionally and reasonably.
Thankgiving eating is forgivable. So is eating at a birthday, anniversary or holiday party. But no matter what the occasion, continue to drink water before eating, don’t forget to exercise, eat smaller meals instead of a large one, socialize, enjoy family and watch the alcohol intake.
Don’t get discouraged if after celebrating with a big meal that you end up with an extra pound or two. Just get back on track or ramp up your routine. Also keep in mind that our weight doesn’t stay the same every day even when we eat well and exercise. It fluctuates. Don’t focus solely on a number on the scale.
If you’ve adopted the healthy habits that are required to drop pounds, then you probably won’t deviate much from them on Thanksgiving anyway.
Let’s be thankful for the lives — and bodies — we have and for the opportunities to change them for the better every day.