|Basic InformationLatest News|AAN: Mercury in Seafood May Be Tied to Higher Risk of ALSDon't Skip Veggies in WinterDoes Mercury in Fish Play a Role in ALS?Increase in Foodborne Disease Outbreaks Tied to Imported FoodMost Parents Don't Think They're Meeting Kids' Nutritional NeedsVitamin D Pumps Up MusclesCutting Salt a Health Boost for Kidney PatientsPossible Drawback to Gluten-Free: Toxic MetalsHealth Tip: Give Your Kids Bone-Building FoodHealth Tip: Enjoy BeansHealth Tip: Eat Your AntioxidantsMediterranean Diet Plus Olive Oil a Boost to Heart Health?Health Tip: Eating a Healthy DietWinning the Veggie Wars With KidsHeart-Healthy Tips for Your Grocery ListWhole-Grain Foods May Help You Stay SlimHealth Tip: Have an Unusual BreakfastWhen Counting Calories, Consider the Cream and SugarHealth Tip: For Better Sleep, Watch What You EatSubstitutions for a 'Slimmer Bowl' Football PartyU.S. High School Kids Abandoning Sweetened SodasHealth Tip: Buying Nutritious Food on a BudgetHealth Tip: Make Sure You Get Enough IronToxins in Your Fast-Food Packaging?Timing of Your Meals Might Reduce Heart RisksMediterranean Diet May Help Lower ADHD RiskCould the 'Mediterranean' Diet Help Prevent ADHD?Health Tip: Avoid Added SugarsMost U.S. Children Consume at Least One Sugary Drink a DayKids' Sugary Drink Habits Start EarlyEven One High-Fat Meal Can Harm Your Liver, Study FindsGrilled, Smoked Meats May Up Mortality Risk After Breast CancerFDA, EPA Issue Guidance on Fish ConsumptionHealth Tip: Help Young Athletes Avoid MalnutritionCould Grilled, Smoked Meats Lower Survival After Breast Cancer?FDA Offers Guidance on Fish Intake for Kids, Pregnant WomenIncentives May Spur Poor Families to Buy More Fruits, VeggiesMonkey Study Boosts Theory That Fewer Calories Can Extend LifeHealth Tip: Stick With Your Healthy-Eating ResolutionCaffeine Found to Reduce Age-Related InflammationKids' Use of Artificial Sweeteners Spiked in Recent YearsMost of Canada's Packaged Foods, Drinks Have Added SugarsSushi Lovers, Beware: Tapeworm Now Found in U.S. SalmonDespite Pledges, No Improvement in Chain Restaurant Kids' Menus: StudyHealth Tip: Eat a Protein-Rich BreakfastWant to Leave Dinner Feeling Full? Bring on the BeansGovernment-Backed Salt Reduction Efforts Could Deliver Big Health Pay DayLots of Red Meat May Be Tied to Gut Disorder in MenHealth Tip: Improve Your DietHealth Tip: Get Enough Vitamin CQuestions and AnswersLinks
Exploding Some Turkey Myths
by -- Robert Preidt
Updated: Nov 23rd 2016
WEDNESDAY, Nov. 23, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A nutrition expert is talking turkey to dispel some common myths about the focus of most Thanksgiving meals.
The most-repeated myth is that eating turkey makes you sleepy. While it does contain tryptophan -- an amino acid supplement that promotes sleep when taken alone on an empty stomach -- turkey also contains many other amino acids that are likely to limit the effects of tryptophan, said Judith Rodriguez. She is chair of the department of nutrition and dietetics at the University of North Florida.
After a large meal, your sleepiness is more likely due to blood being diverted from throughout the body, including the muscles and brain, to the stomach for digestion, Rodriguez explained in a university news release.
The second-most popular myth is that turkey skin is made up of bad "saturated" fat. Turkey skin doesn't contain just bad fats, it also has some good fats. But if you have some turkey skin, limit it to a small piece, Rodriguez advised.
Then there's the myth that says a USDA inspection sticker indicates that the bird is fresh and top grade. In fact, the government checks for wholesomeness and proper handling, and provides voluntary grading services. About 70 percent of inspected turkeys are graded. The grades are U.S. Grade A, B and C, Rodriguez said.
It's also a myth that you can check a whole turkey for "doneness" by pricking the leg to check for bleeding, she said.
Instead, you should use an oven-safe thermometer inserted in the lower part of the thigh or in the center of the stuffing. A temperature of 180 degrees in the thigh and 165 degrees in the breast or stuffing indicates doneness, Rodriguez said.
And finally, the myth of origin. Turkeys are not from Turkey, Rodriguez said.
"Of the two wild species of turkey, one is indigenous to the areas from Canada to Mexico, and the other is indigenous to the areas from the Yucatan to Guatemala. The Aztecs ate domesticated turkeys. Turkeys were found in the New World and taken back to Spain, from where they quickly spread throughout Europe and other regions. The bird was introduced to England in the 1500s, then the Pilgrims brought it back to North America in the 1620s on the Mayflower, not realizing that was indeed, the turkey's point of origin," she explained in the news release.
Mass.Gov offers more Thanksgiving health and safety tips.
This article: Copyright © 2016 HealthDay. All rights reserved.