Waste Less, Enjoy More This Thanksgiving

Turkey Day can celebrate plenty without wasting food.

When the original Thanksgiving diners got up from the table in 1621 to loosen their belts, nutritionists estimate that they had ingested about 550 calories per person, the equivalent of eating a burrito from Taco Bell. Flash forward 400 years, and Thanksgiving dinners now pack a 2,000-to-3,000-calorie punch. And while the Pilgrims struggled to grow enough food to survive, the United States now produces so much food that we waste 40 percent of it—about $100 billion worth a year.

As the country turns its collective attention to food tomorrow, perhaps we can use the holiday to make a statement about our food waste problem by taking steps to conserve, starting with how we shop. Before you head to Costco and buy the largest bottle of vanilla extract possible, consider whether you or someone you know has leftover holidays staples in the pantry from last year. And consider donating this year's leftover non-perishable goods to a food pantry. Another tip: make a shopping list and refuse to buy anything that's not on it. This will scare off the temptation to succumb to sample-inspired purchases at Trader Joe's.

When you finally arrive at the Thanksgiving table, limit what you put on your plate. That way, you won't end up with a plate full of food that's been grazed by salad dressing and cranberry sauce and is unfit to rejoin its casserole dish in the fridge. Leftovers are the best part of Thanksgiving, after all. Jonathan Bloom, author of American Wasteland, recommends the following on his blog to make the most out of them: Ask guests to show up with to-go containers. Otherwise, the host may end up with more leftover turkey, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce than she can turn into Thanksgiving sandwiches. Plan recipes ahead to keep you excited about your leftovers' possibilities, so you don't get sick of three-day old sweet potatoes. (They're great in quesadillas.) And don't be lazy: Pack up Thanksgiving leftovers before descending into a football-and-food coma. That way, they'll keep longer.

Even food scraps can be turned into vegetable stock, and don't forget to compost. Follow these steps, and it's possible to celebrate bounty without being wasteful.

Image via (cc) Flickr user Notions Capital


Even though marathon running is on the decline, half a million people signed up to participate in the 2020 London Marathon. It seems wild that someone would voluntarily sign up to run 26.2 miles, but those half a million people might actually be on to something. A new study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that running a marathon can help reverse signs of aging.

Researchers at Barts and University College London looked at 138 first-time marathon runners between the ages of 21 and 69. "We wanted to look at novice athletes. We didn't include people who said they ran for more than two hours a week," Dr. Charlotte Manisty, the study's senior author and cardiologist at University College London, said per CNN.

Keep Reading
via Stu Hansen / Twitter

In a move that feels like the subject line of a spam email or the premise of a bad '80s movie, online shopping mogul Yusaku Maezawa is giving away money as a social experiment.

Maezawa will give ¥1 million yen ($9,130) to 1,000 followers who retweeted his January 1st post announcing the giveaway. The deadline to retweet was Tuesday, January 7.

Keep Reading
via David Leavitt / Twitter

Anyone who has ever worked in retail knows that the worst thing about the job, right after the pay, are the unreasonable cheapskates who "want to talk to your manager" to get some money off an item.

They think that throwing a tantrum will save them a few bucks and don't care if they completely embarrass themselves in the process. Sometimes that involves belittling the poor employee who's just trying to get through their day with an ounce of dignity.

Twitter is rallying around a gal named Tori who works at a Target in Massachusetts after she was tweet-shamed by irate chapekate, journalist, and Twitter troll, David Leavitt.

Keep Reading