LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Diabetics may find themselves pushing away from the Thanksgiving table for the sake of staying healthy, but local Dietician Bianca Coats says you don’t have to. There are ways you can stay healthy and still indulge in a Thanksgiving feast.

Coats says that doctors try to promote certain lifestyle changes when a patient is diagnosed with diabetes. It isn’t just about eating less sugar, which is a common misconception. Changes to consider include healthier food options, portion control, and getting active.

“As adults we want to make sure we exercise at least 30 minutes a day. Size does matter sometime but as long as you are getting that exercise daily to balance your weight along with what you are eating,” says Coats.

Even if you don’t have diabetes, a balanced plate is equally as important as exercise. Diabetics should add more carbs and greens. Throughout the holidays, Coats recommends diabetics check their blood sugar two to three times a day during the holidays, exercise, and drink lots of water.