Skip Navigation

At Least Part of Your Thanksgiving Dinner Will be Healthy

Well, the big day, Thanksgiving, is just around the corner. It’s obviously the biggest day of the year for turkeys. It’s estimated that nearly 50 million turkeys will be consumed in the United States on Thanksgiving Day.

That’s a lot of gobblers!


Many of us tend to pack on a few extra pounds during the holiday season. Some of that poundage is due to all the turkey we stuff down our gullets. According to the National Turkey Federation, Americans will gobble down well over one billion pounds of turkey during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

No wonder there’s lots of belt-loosening and belching going on after we stagger from the table to the couch!

Some Good News…

You don’t need statistics to tell you that Americans eat lots of turkey. Really, though, that’s not a bad thing (except for the turkeys!). That’s because turkey is considered to be a pretty healthy food.

Turkey is a great source of lean, nutrient-rich protein. Its protein-to-fat ratio is so beneficial, in fact, that turkey is now considered to rank among a select group of proteins that help to stabilize post-meal insulin levels. (Fluctuating insulin levels have been associated with a number of health problems, including the development of type 2 diabetes.)

And turkey is rich in a broad range of nutrients. Every single B vitamin is present in turkey. Turkey is also rich in selenium, potassium, iron, zinc, copper, phosphorus and magnesium.

Turkey can also help to keep your vision sharp and clear. It’s counted as one of the ten foods most helpful for maintaining eye health. That’s largely because turkey is a rich source of zinc, which contributes to healthy eyes. And the suite of B vitamins contained in turkey can help to prevent the development of cataracts.

And did you know that turkey is even associated with a decreased risk of developing pancreatic cancer? It’s true. A recent study showed that the daily consumption of skinless turkey helped to statistically reduce the risk of pancreatic cancer.

And the Rest of Your Thanksgiving Dinner?

Turkey is good-for-you food. Highly nutritious, relatively low fat, and a great source of protein.

And all the other goodies that you’ll be consuming on Turkey Day? Well…maybe not so much. Some of the other foods traditionally consumed on Thanksgiving are anything but healthy – at least by modern nutritional guidelines.

But Thanksgiving comes but once a year. So relax, enjoy, and give thanks. After all, we do have much to be thankful for, don’t we?




This entry was posted on Wednesday, November 26th, 2014 at 2:10 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Find out the latest from Bob Carr