Turkey is a great source of lean protein, which aids in regulating insulin after eating. Three ounces (3 oz) of white meat is only 125 calories, zero carbohydrates, 2 grams of fat and a whopping 26 grams of protein! The dark meat is slightly higher in fat, but offers slightly more nutritional value.
Tryptophan and Selenium
Turkey is a great source of iron, zinc and potassium as well as vitamins B6, B12 and niacin. Most of us have heard that turkey contains the amino acid tryptophan, which is essential in the production of serotonin, an important hormone in mood regulation. Tryptophan is commonly said to make us tired after a Thanksgiving turkey dinner, but the fact is there is not enough tryptophan in turkey to make us tired – it is more likely due to overeating and with all that yummy food. Turkey is also a great source of selenium which is an important element in thyroid hormone metabolism.
Salt, Hormones and Antibiotics
There are some down sides to turkey, it can be high in salt and commercially raised turkey may contain hormones and antibiotics, as does chicken. Anyone concerned about these things may want to look for free range or naturally raised turkeys to avoid these chemicals.
We all look forward to gathering with our friends and family at Thanksgiving to talk and share a wonderful meal. Turkey continues to be the traditional mainstay of that Thanksgiving meal, probably because it offers so many health benefits and goes so well with healthy side dishes available at this time of year.
From all of us at Natural Wellness, we wish you all a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!