7 Tips for Eating as Much Food as Humanly Possible at Thanksgiving Dinner

If you consider Thanksgiving dinner to be the ultimate eating challenge, then Popular Science is here to help with seven tips for how to consume more food than you ever thought possible at this year's holiday meal....

  • Stop eating four to six hours before dinner. You need to start on an empty stomach, but if you’re starving, you’ll eat too quickly instead of pacing yourself.
  • Exercise earlier in the day. Physical exertion can stimulate the appetite. A brisk walk or run helps move food through your digestive system and empty out your stomach in preparation.
  • Start with carbs. “Potatoes, stuffing, rolls require minimal effort,” says registered dietician Leslie Bonci. “They layer nicely—you can pack in more without feeling too full.”
  • Sip liquids throughout the meal. That'll help food move through your stomach as you eat.
  • Take a half-hour break. That should be enough time for your stomach to make room for more food just when you think you can't eat another bite.
  • Move around between dinner and dessert. “Part of the digestion of food is movement,” Bonci says. “If you take yourself from a sitting to a standing position, you’re going to move food more quickly and feel less uncomfortable sooner than if you just sit down.”
  • Go to town on dessert. Sweet foods don’t make you feel full as quickly as savory ones do. So after the meal, dig in to some pumpkin pie. After all your hard eating, you’ve earned it.

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