MANHATTAN, Kan. — Food and food safety pros have numerous tips for preparing a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, but, other than washing hands before and after the meal, recommendations for diners are few. Until now, that is.
According to Mary Meck Higgins, a Kansas State University Research and Extension nutrition specialist, a modest Thanksgiving dinner, with 3 ounces of skinless roast turkey; 4 ounces (one half cup) of mashed potatoes; 2 tablespoons of gravy; 4 ounces of green bean casserole; 4 ounces of honey-glazed carrots; dinner roll with two teaspoons of soft margarine; relishes (including a stalk of celery, 1 ounce sweet pickle, 1 cinnamon-spiced apple ring, 1 tablespoon black olives, and 3 tablespoons jellied cranberry sauce) and a slice of pumpkin pie with a tablespoon of whipped topping will have about 1,100 calories, 38 grams of fat, 150 grams carbohydrate and 40 grams of protein.
With food, fellowship and gratitude the goal for the holiday, Higgins also recommended moderate physical activity to help burn the extra calories, rather than tipping the scale upwards.
She recommended waiting 30 or more minutes after eating to allow time for digestion before moderate physical activity.
A person weighing 154 pounds should plan on about four hours of walking at 3 1/2 miles per hour or two hours of jogging at five miles per hour to burn all of the calories consumed during the sample holiday meal.