Researchers say that we can blame turkey for many things, but one thing we CAN’T blame it for is that nap we always take after eating a big Thanksgiving dinner.

Some researchers say that tryptophan, an amino acid found in turkey, has proved itself to be an effective sleep aid, causing that post-Thanksgiving meal sleepiness. But poultry expert Scott Beyer says that while tryptophan can make people sleepy, it is not solely responsible for that post-Thanksgiving meal sleepiness.

Only a small percentage of tryptophan can be found turkey, Beyer says. The sleepiness caused after a Thanksgiving dinner probably has more to do with the actual meal, which is high in fat and carbohydrates, and if you had any alcohol with the meal.
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Is the turkey we put on the table today at Thanksgiving considerably different than the one the Pilgrims found out in the wild?

Turkey expert Nickolas Zimmermann says, “Turkeys in the days of the Pilgrims were similar to the wild turkeys that are now abundant in most states of the nation. They have dark plumage and can fly. Modern turkeys have been bred to have large breast muscles, desired by consumers. Modern turkeys also have been bred to have white feathers, so that pigment from dark feathers does not blemish the skin. The selection process has been so successful that modern turkeys are too heavy to fly under most circumstances.”
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On Christmas (hopefully), our thoughts turn to giving, but on Thanksgiving, our thoughts turn to that turkey we’re going to dine on with friends and family. Turkey is still fairly unknown in Europe, but Americans are eating over 100% more of it each year than we did 35 years ago. How is today’s turkey different from the one the Pilgrims ate?

Turkey expert Nickolas Zimmermann says, “Turkeys in the days of the Pilgrims were similar to the wild turkeys that are now abundant in most states of the nation. They have dark plumage and can fly. Modern turkeys have been bred to have large breast muscles, desired by consumers. Modern turkeys also have been bred to have white feathers, so that pigment from dark feathers does not blemish the skin.
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