If you think that nutrition and fitness professionals spend Thanksgiving nibbling on celery sticks while the rest of us feast and watch football, you're dead wrong. We asked some of our favorite better-body professionals to reveal the dishes they bring to the table and were pleasantly surprised by the delicious factor. Read on to get some healthy-indulging inspiration.
The Pro: Cassie Kipper, R.D., fitness manager and Tier 4 coach, Chicago
What I Bring: "I love to bring a secretly healthy peanut-butter pie. I use 32 ounces of vanilla fat-free Greek yogurt mixed with about 4 tablespoons of natural peanut butter and 1 to 2 teaspoons of cinnamon. Once mixed, I put it in the healthiest pie crust I can find (or make) and chill it for a couple hours. The pie is low-fat, protein-rich, creamy, peanut-buttery deliciousness."
The Pro: Emily Feurring, certified holistic-health coach and brand evangelist for Creative Juice
What I Bring: "My mom always taught me to prepare something healthy and delicious so there'd be at least one dish I'd want to eat lots of. This year I was inspired by the seasonal quinoa salad we offer at Creative Juice. My version features red quinoa studded with slow-roasted acorn squash and Brussels sprouts. The contrasting colors and flavors make for a beautiful dish that's loaded with nutrients and healthy carbohydrates (to help soak up other festive indulgences)."
The Pro: Mariane Theroux, Ph.D., registered holistic nutritionist and nutrition coach, Precision Nutrition
What I Bring: "My go-to is always dessert. I love taking traditional dessert recipes and re-creating them so that they're made of wholesome ingredients that actually nourish the body. When it comes to Thanksgiving, my family and friends have come to expect delicious pies. Two favorites are pumpkin and apple." (See the recipes.)
The Pro: Josh Stolz, master trainer and Tier 4 coach, New York City
What I Bring: "I actually love Thanksgiving breakfast, and I love pumpkin everything. So for breakfast, I make gluten- and dairy-free pumpkin pancakes with oat flour or coconut flour. I like to pair this with a traditional breakfast of scrambled eggs (free-range), sliced avocado, and steamed spinach."
The Pro: Lashaun Dale, senior national group-fitness creative manager
What I Bring: "I love Thanksgiving for the focus on community and connection, but I've always hated the meal because it was so overwhelming, complex, and full of carbs. I always feel like I must take a nap after. So I make sure to bring something green, like a salad or fresh veggies, and try to fill up at least three-quarters of my plate with greens, veggies, nuts, hummus, some crackers, and things that I can dip in my very favorite part of Thanksgiving: homemade cranberry sauce with whole cranberries and walnuts."
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