Wellness & Education

Thanksgiving “Food Coma” Explained

The turkey isn’t the only thing that gets stuffed on Thanksgiving. According to the Calorie Control Council, the average Thanksgiving dinner contains over 3000 calories. Dip, chips and “nibbles” add an extra 1500 calories. That’s 4500 calories in all, with an average of 229 grams of fat.  Thanksgiving: The Battle of the Bulge (caloriecontrol.org)

So why do you get sleepy after eating all that food?  

Urban legend says that tryptophan in the turkey causes you to hit the couch. This isn’t true, however. The real culprit is carbohydrate overload. Excess carbohydrates lead to the production of melatonin, a hormone that causes sleepiness.  

If you want to stay fully conscious after Thanksgiving dinner try following these tips.  

  1. Cut back on seconds 
  2. Substitute a few of your favorite dishes with lighter versions  
  3. Skip the chips, dips and “nibbles”