Thanksgiving is almost upon us and many wonderful recipes and dishes, passed down for generations, are awaiting our taste buds.

People may gain weight during the holiday season between Halloween and  Christmas due to overeating. Some extra  calories come from sweet treats, but they may also come from added fats used in some preparation methods.  Try reducing excess calories by making healthier choices for yourself and your loved ones. 

This infographic offers easy strategies to reduce the extra sugar, salt, and saturated fats that are often found in holiday celebrations as well as ways to get more dietary fiber through whole grains, fruits, and vegetables.  You can also use the search feature on the MyPlate Kitchen  or Eat Smart Recipe  websites to easily find new and healthy ways to prepare the old favorite recipes. Here are some new recipe ideas for pumpkin

A few changes to food and activity choices can  make a world of difference in creating a healthier holiday. Some great ideas to build healthy eating and physical activity into holiday festivities can be found here

Stretch Food Dollars to Buy More MyPlate Foods

  • Check store flyers, shop store specials, use coupons, shop deals online
  • Look for  the best deals – seasonal, holiday foods are often on sale - fresh, frozen, or canned fruits and veggies are all healthy choices; find recipes at
  • Use your food supplement benefits when food shopping at the grocery store or  farmers’ market.

 Stretch your money by making the most of leftovers from holiday meals. Check out this Eat Smart blog post for ways to use some of those Thanksgiving leftovers like turkey, potatoes, sweet potatoes, stuffing, squash, and green beans.Here you will find some suggestions to use leftover turkey that are both delicious and nutritious!

Remember to be food-safe when you are preparing your meal. No one wants to get sick from eating any of the fantastic array of holiday foods!


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This material was funded by USDA's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - SNAP in cooperation with Maryland’s Department of Human Services and University of Maryland Extension. University programs, activities, and facilities are available to all without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, age, national origin, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, religion, protected veteran status, genetic information, personal appearance, or any other legally protected class.