ANCHORAGE, Alaska—In just a few days, the holiday food temptation begins. What will be your downfall, the turkey, the stuffing, maybe both?
What is mere frivolous temptation for some can actually be a major medical problem for others.
At Providence Alaska Medical Center, Dr. Ross Tanner speaks to a packed room about re-thinking the traditional Thanksgiving feast.
“The trap is when you smell food and see food, there is a stimulus to eat as much as you want,” said Tanner.
Tanner is trying to give the group, many of whom have diabetes or high cholesterol, some basic tips on how to get through the holiday season without over-indulging.
“Thanksgiving is usually seen as a time of gluttony or overindulgence. It’s actually seen as a day when you can do that. So you’ve got to come up with a defined plan of action,” Tanner said.
It's something Michael Jefferies, a patient of Dr. Tanner's, has been working on for awhile.
“I'm pre-diabetic high blood pressure and high cholesterol. I'm on medication,” said Jefferies.
But since seeing Tanner, Jefferies says his blood pressure and cholesterol are way down.
“I think you have to watch what you eat, the types of food, limit the amount of saturated fat in your diet,” said Jefferies.
Jefferies has followed tanner's tips, which, he says, begins with a plan of action.
“Don't save your appetite for the main meal. Eat some breakfast in the morning and then maybe have some small snacks throughout the day, so maybe they aren't so hungry when it comes to the main meal,” said Tanner.
Other tips include: watching your carbohydrate intake, have small bites of each item instead of large helpings, exercise on holiday if you plan to eat more than normal.
“So it's developing a non-punitive plan of action that's balanced,” Tanner said.
Tanner also recommends having Thanksgiving at your home where you can provide some more healthy alternatives.