Tips to Keep Your Gut Happy During Thanksgiving


For many Americans, Thanksgiving is a holiday that’s centered on eating — and eating, and more eating. You get the point. We just can’t help but go for a second or third helping of something that’s especially delicious, whether that’s cornbread stuffing, green bean casserole, or your aunt’s famous pumpkin pie. But eating all of this food can really put your digestive system through the ringer.

“Around the holidays, people’s diet often change because we’re consuming a lot of fun holiday foods and not a lot of nourishing foods,” says Julie Stefanski, RDN, a dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. “Anything that is a higher-fat food takes longer to be digested, so it’s more likely you’ll feel full and overextended,” she adds.

Of course, Thanksgiving isn’t the only occasion where overeating happens. Many of us do it as part of our daily lives — at restaurants, dinner gatherings, and even (or especially) when we’re eating alone. And that means more opportunities for overeating to stress out and overwhelm our digestive system.

Here’s what you should know about how overeating can affect your gut, along with some strategies to help avoid the unpleasant symptoms you may experience when you push the limits of your stomach.


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