642 Things #25 – How To Eat At Thanksgiving

Lucas,

Some day, you too will reach the age of pure joy, excitement and pleasure of overeating at Thanksgiving. Sure, you’ll hear from plenty of people that overeating at the holiday is bad. Of course it is! No one should overeat, but if you live an active and healthy life (your Mom and I are working on teaching this to you), enjoying a day of excess like this is ok.

Now, there are a few important things to know about how to eat at Thanksgiving. First is this, consider your approach to food, filling your plate and the quantities you choose. Nutritionists say that you’ve got 20 minutes before your brain senses that you’ve been eating and sends signals back suggesting that feeling of fullness.

So, knowing you’ve got 20 minutes to eat all the amazing Thanskgiving dishes, where do you start? How do you properly prep a plate? Well, thankfully, I’ve got quite a bit of experience in this area.

The first step, my son, is to scope the dishes and mentally plan ahead. A few of the staples of the holiday meal are turkey, potatoes, bread, stuffing – all “heavy” foods. They’ll fill you up quick. You’ll get a sampling of each on your plate, but best to not overload on them. Remember, you’ve got to go back for seconds!

Start with the main event, a few pieces of turkey. Get a scoop of potatoes (one of each variety that is available, naturally), and top generously with gravy. One scoop of stuffing. Remember, you’ll get seconds, so don’t worry if the servings on your plate look small.

Ensure you get a small serving of cranberries or salad to balance out those starches and complex carbohydrates. These also pair quite well with the salty and less rich flavors of the staples mentioned earlier.

Alright, so your plate is probably close to full and should be nearly equally proportioned with various side dishes and turkey. Now comes the fun part – eat!

There’s no wrong way to pile this smorgasbord of delectable flavors into your mouth, so go at it. Mix and match. A bit of potato with turkey. Some cranberries with a bite of sweet potato. One flavor individually. However you want to eat – that’s the correct way.

As your approach the end of plate one, you’re probably starting to feel a bit full. That’s ok, that’s supposed to happen! Now is the time that willpower comes in. Grab your plate and go back for the three favorite dishes you just had. You’ve got more surfact space to work with now on your plate, so the size of the samples here is your call. Remember, you’re likely approaching that 20 minute window of fullness, so best consider that when scooping.

Enjoy that second plate, take your time with it and savor each bite. Thanksgiving is the best meal of the year! You’ll wait another 360+ days to get this collective flavor sampling again, so savor it.

Phew! You did it! You ate a successful Thanksgiving meal! I bet you feel full, satisfied and sleepy. Good, that too is supposed to happen.

But, wait! What about pie?! That’s right. Thanksgiving meal is the meal that keeps on giving. (See what I did there?) Pumpkin pie. Apple pie. Fresh homemade whipped cream. Ice cream to make those slices à la Mode. But you’re stuffed to the gills, you couldn’t possibly eat another bite! Ok, then take a short break, go play, watch some football, take a nap, and when you’re ready in about one hour, get ready for the sweet and satisfying ending to the meal. It’s just the best.

Love,

Dad

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