On Monday, The Upshot ran the following piece (copyright 2015, The New York Times Company) as part of an interactive in which they republished many of my columns on food and nutrition. It’s awesome, and it’s gorgeous. Go check it out!
Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays in large part because of the big meal. Few celebrations center so completely on a feast. Given our collective concern over health and nutrition, it is inevitable that many people worry about how much they should eat in one sitting.
Of course, it’s not healthy to eat yourself sick — consuming too much, too fast, can lead to indigestion and other problems. People at high risk for heart disease, blood clots or diabetes shouldn’t throw out their doctor’s recommendations. But for most people, this isn’t the day to worry about food. As I have frequently written, one of the keys to healthful eating, and a good life, is everything in moderation — including moderation.
Tara Parker-Pope did the math a few years ago at the Well blog and found you’re probably eating around 1,000 calories at Thanksgiving. That’s not bad at all, as feasts go. Even with a big piece of pumpkin pie with whipped cream (400 calories) and two glasses of wine (250 calories), you’ll be hard pressed to get to 2,000 calories. A moderately active adult man should consume, on average, 2,400 to 2,800 calories a day and a woman about 2,000 calories, so as long as you take it easy the rest of the day, there’s nothing offensively gluttonous about eating a big Thanksgiving meal.
Enjoy the big dinner and enjoy a second helping of advice on eating and drinking that we have collected here.