Thanksgiving is a day full of family, food and fun, but in all the hustle and bustle, we oftentimes forget to follow a few simple rules to keep our health in check. Some health hazards that occur over Thanksgiving include salmonella poisoning after eating an undercooked turkey and even heart failure problems if too much salt is consumed. These, and other, dangers can put you in the emergency room over the holiday and greatly affect your physical health. Learn how you can have a safe and fulfilling Thanksgiving holiday by following these health tips!
Safeguarding Your Physical Health
The Thanksgiving holiday is a celebratory day filled with food and fun. However, if we’re not careful, there are numerous ways that we can damage our physical health during the holidays. You may ask, “How could I hurt myself over Thanksgiving? All I do is eat!” While it may seem strange to safeguard yourself from danger during the festivities, you’ll soon understand why you should never let your guard down. For starters, most families cook a turkey for Thanksgiving as tradition, but leave their families vulnerable to food poisoning, specifically salmonella, when the turkey isn’t prepared correctly. Always make sure that your turkey and stuffing inside of it reaches the correct temperatures to avoid illness. Take the time to properly defrost the turkey and immediately refrigerate the leftovers so that bacteria doesn’t grow. Additionally, be careful when cutting your turkey as accidental cuts to the hand is one of the most common reasons why people land themselves in the emergency room over Thanksgiving each year. You should always use a carving fork when cutting the meat, and limit the distractions around you while doing so to avoid any slips of the hand. Ironically, even though residential fires are low in number throughout the majority of the year, that number more than doubles over Thanksgiving as people forget about their turkey in the oven. Check on the turkey frequently and be careful about frying it as third degree burns can occur when a frozen turkey can cause an explosion when placed in hot oil. Lastly, if you’re going to be drinking alcohol over the holidays, be careful when driving and make sure to find a designated driver that can get you home safely. Car accidents are very common during Thanksgiving as alcohol consumption tends to increase and most people end up traveling by car after the festivities end.
How To Eat Healthy Over Thanksgiving
There are multiple physical dangers that are present over the Thanksgiving holiday, but we mustn’t forget how the food we eat affects us on this day and in the future, as well. Holiday food is typically seasoned with high amounts of salt for better taste, and exorbitant amounts of salt is known to add stress on the body and worsen congestive heart failure and water retention. If you have heart issues, high blood pressure or high cholesterol, limit the amount of salt that you intake this year to keep your body healthy. Additionally, make a plan to outsmart the buffet of sweet and salty treats that you’ll be confronted with on Thanksgiving. Start with a few bites of some vegetables and only grab the few favorite foods you love before moving away from the table. Make sure to eat slowly since it takes about 20 minutes for your body to realize that it’s actually full. Grab small servings of the best food and take a walk with your family after eating to keep your body active and burn extra turkey calories.
While it may sound funny at first, make sure that you’re getting plenty of rest before Thanksgiving. When we are sleep deprived, our bodies tend to crave high-calorie, high-sugar foods that can wreck our blood sugar and cause us to overeat. Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep before turkey day begins so that you can be prepared to fight off temptation. Lastly, try to focus more on the fun that’s going on around you rather than the food. Enjoying the people that you’re spending the holiday with will distract you from food temptation and help you establish and improve healthy, happy relationships with those closest to you. In this way, you’ll safeguard both your physical and emotional health so that you can be your best self for the rest of the year.
What A Functional Medicine Visit Can Do For You
Once the holidays are over, it may be a good idea for a medical checkup by your doctor. One of the best and most comprehensive medical evaluations available to you is a functional medicine visit, and it focuses on treating the triggers and mediators of disease. These visits help you identify what is triggering your symptoms and effectively treat their underlying causes. By taking into account individual genomic and environmental factors, a functional medicine visit develops a personalized plan that makes changes to your diet, lifestyle, stress levels and sleep patterns so that you can be your healthiest self. Most functional medicine visits include a physical exam, consultations with a nutritionist, gut health testing, hormonal support, aggressive cardiovascular testing, body composition measurements and evaluations of your vitamin, antioxidant, mineral and amino acid levels. Be prepared to make significant changes in your life so that you can effectively combat disease and make the correct alterations to your lifestyle for successful treatment. Functional medicine doesn’t provide a magical pill or a lose-weight-quick option for patients; it involves hard work, commitment and looking inward to make decisions that will positively impact your health and life.
Enjoy The Holidays This Year With Our Help!
At Balanced Well-Being Healthcare, we use functional medicine to address your health needs and find an actual solution to your problems. Whether you need more tips on how to safeguard your health this Thanksgiving or want to find out why your body is acting the way it is, we can help! Call our office at (970) 631-8286 to learn how you can improve your health this year!