Photo by Sash Kopf Turkey meat, contrary to popular belief, do not necessarily put the body to sleep.

Many rumors circulate about the Thanksgiving poultry.

Turkey has been the staple food for Thanksgiving since Abraham Lincoln declared it a national holiday. It has been eaten on all holidays, including Christmas. The bird has been a popular animal for Americans, even earning the title of being “more respectable than the Bald Eagle,” by Benjamin Franklin. However, there are many myths floating about the poultry.

Turkey equals tradition,” said junior Kaila Toledo. Approximately 46 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving, according to the University of Illinois.

Eating turkey on holidays has been around for years, with the pilgrims eating it on Thanksgiving in 1621. There is discrepancy between what dishes the pilgrims ate at the first feast,  but it is known that they ate turkey.

Turkey is a popular choice of food on Thanksgiving, 74% of students enjoy it. “It tastes good with potatoes,” said junior Madelyn Smith.

Many people are wary, however, of stuffing themselves of the bird. A popular rumor is that the poultry can easily put people to sleep. While technically true, there are many other factors at play.

Turkey contains the chemical tryptophan, which releases hormones that induce sleep. However, it does not contain an abnormal amount compared to other meats and poultries.It’s the heaps of carbohydrates that are the cause of the problem. Carbs trigger the release of insulin, which eats away amino acids, leaving a path for the tryptophan to do its work.

While some people may not enjoy turkey, it has been a popular choice for holidays for centuries. Many rumors float about the famous bird, but it hasn’t stopped the demand for them, yet.


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