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It’s the start of November, and we bet you are already craving that delicious turkey dinner on Thanksgiving Day. No need to feel guilty! Here are six reasons why turkey should be on the menu year round!
#1. Turkey is packed with protein.
A 4-ounce serving of turkey contains over 30 grams of protein! That one serving equals 65% of your recommended daily protein. The essential amino acids in this lean protein keep you feeling full and satisfied. That’s why it’s the perfect sandwich meat to get you through the afternoon slump. Eat a little turkey and you are good to go!
#2. Turkey is low in calories and saturated fat.
A 4-ounce serving of skinless breast contains around 160 calories and only 4 grams of fat. Top it with naturally fat-free cranberry sauce. Not only are cranberries bursting with antioxidants, they also help aid in digestion. The perfect pairing for that big Thanksgiving Day meal.
#3. Turkey is rich in vitamins and minerals.
Turkey is a great source of vitamins B3 and B6, phosphorus, iron, niacin, folic acid, zinc and potassium. These nutrients help lower cholesterol, boost the immune system, regulate blood pressure, protect against heart disease and birth defects, and assist in nerve function and healing. Turkey also has selenium, which is vital for a healthy thyroid and immune system function. Selenium may also aid in cancer prevention, by helping to rid the body of free radicals.
#4. Turkey is versatile.
Sure, that big, whole roasted turkey is our favorite. But it comes in many other forms at the grocery store, including sliced lunchmeat, and pre-packaged cutlets, drumsticks, breasts, and tenderloins. It can be grilled, baked, roasted, fried, poached, broiled and sautéed. It is also a mild, lean meat that can be used in any number of dishes, from Turkey Picatta with fresh lemon juice, to Turkey Tetrazzini with pasta, peas and mushrooms (a great solution for leftover turkey).
#5. Turkey helps you catch some zzzzzzzzz’s.
Ever wonder why you feel sleepy after the Thanksgiving feast? L-tryptophan is an essential amino acid found in turkey. Amino acids are building blocks of protein. Your body can only get tryptophan from foods like turkey, since it can’t produce it on its own. Tryptophan is needed by the body to make serotonin, a brain chemical that boosts mood and helps you sleep better—serotonin is used by the body to make melatonin, the sleep hormone.
#6. Consider organic turkey for more health benefits.
All turkey is nutritious and low in saturated fat, but grass-fed organic turkey is well worth the extra pennies. These birds have not been given antibiotics and have access to natural pastures. Organic turkey has a higher nutritional content and the taste is out of this world!
Don’t worry about leaving the skin on when roasting your Thanksgiving bird. Recent studies have shown leaving the skin on seals in the natural juices without adding any fat. Just remove the skin before you dig in! Your turkey will be guaranteed moist and delicious, naturally, instead of dry and drowning in gravy.
Don’t wait until Thanksgiving Day to enjoy turkey. Gobble up some turkey today!
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