Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving Stupor: It's Not the Turkey OR the Fat

An article on the Mental Floss magazine website blamed the stupor people usually feel after a Thanksgiving meal on (what else besides turkey?) the fat--229 grams of it in an "average Thanksgiving meal," according to the article.

The urge to snooze is more the fault of the average Thanksgiving meal and all the food and booze that go with it. Here are a few things that play into the nap factor: Fats — That turkey skin is delicious, but fats take a lot of energy to digest, so the body redirects blood to the digestive system. Reduced blood flow in the rest of the body means reduced energy.
 My response:

Say what? First of all, even if you ate all the skin from half a turkey plus a whole stick of butter, that would be only 190 g of fat. (source: nutritiondata.com) Thanksgiving is mostly a carbohydrate fest: potatoes, yams, desserts and most snack foods are mainly sugar and starch. Second, I'd like to see the evidence that a high-fat meal "reduces blood flow to the rest of the body" any more than a high-carb or high-protein meal. When I started a low-carb, high fat diet a few years ago, one of the first things I noticed was how much *less* sleep I needed, and I've heard many others say the same thing. I'll be enjoying a low-carb Thanksgiving without any calorie counting, weight gain or Tums.


tess said...

no kidding! i get so tired of the negative effects of sugar orgies that get blamed on fats....

Lori Miller said...

That, and people who get their data from five seconds of Googling. To get to almost 3000 calories that included around 229g of fat, you'd have to eat, for instance, the skin of half a turkey, 2 cups of mashed potatoes with a stick of butter, and 2 cups of cooked dark meat turkey. This is an "average" Thanksgiving meal, as in, half of us are eating even more than that? "Somethin' here just doesn't add up, somethin' here just doesn't seem right."