Does Turkey Make You Sleepy?

thanksgiving turkey

With the holidays upon us, there is bound to be a lot of time spent with families around the dinner table. Thanksgiving is known to be a time to give thanks, spend time with your family, perhaps watch some football, as well as gather around the table and enjoy a well-cooked meal. But sometimes after eating all that turkey, we may feel ready to take a nap. But why is that? And is it the turkey making us tired, or just the holiday in general?

Turkey has a stigma around it to cause drowsiness. Turkey does include a nutrient called tryptophan, which is used by the body to make serotonin, a chemical in the brain that calms as well as causes sleep. The nutrient is often blamed for making you feel drowsy, however there are a lot of other foods like chicken, fish and milk products that also contain the nutrient.

With that in mind, turkey is not necessarily to blame for making you feel tired after your Thanksgiving meal. By consuming that much food in one sitting, your metabolism makes necessary adjustments in order to digest that increased intake.  Consuming large amounts of carbohydrates, sugars as well as alcohol can have a huge part in why you feel so tired after eating a large meal.

So, while turkey is not necessarily to blame for your post-feast sleepiness, there may be other contributions. Regardless, make sure to enjoy your day and plan ahead by getting a good night’s sleep beforehand so you are ready for all the holiday activities.



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