With Thanksgiving only a few days away, I’m sure I’m not the only one with turkey on my mind. Even when I was writing this post, I began salivating thinking about all the enormous feast I’m about to devour. Most of us need a nap after our big meal, but is it because turkey makes you sleepy?

Whether or not you celebrate Thanksgiving by gobbling up a ginormous turkey meal, you have probably heard that the traditional bird makes you sleepy. I want to help you understand the myth that turkey makes you sleepy so you can spare yourself the embarrassment and learn the truth about these misunderstood creatures.

Turkey Makes You Sleepy

Contrary to popular belief, eating turkey isn’t the main reason you feel sleepy after a Thanksgiving feast. Although turkey contains tryptophan, an amino acid responsible for helping to manage our sleep cycle, eating turkey on its own is probably not causing you to feel sleepy. In fact turkey isn’t any more sleep-inducing than other foods. Even some foods, such as cheddar cheese, have higher levels of tryptophan. Nutrition experts believe that consuming large amounts of carbohydrates and alcohol may be the real cause of a post-Thanksgiving meal snooze.

There is no denying the fact we feel sleepy after a Thanksgiving feast. But tryptophan or no tryptophan, nutrition experts say that the feeling of slothfulness and the near coma you feel after your Thanksgiving meal is mostly a result of overeating. When you include all the alcohol and dessert along with the sweet cranberry relish, sweet potatoes with marshmallows and brown sugar, and my favorite, pecan pie, it’s natural for your body to go into a slumberous state.

The amount of fat in your meal alone, can cause you to go comatose. Fat requires assistance with digestion and a fat-laden meal of gravy, bacon crusted turkey, and ice cream, usually redirects the blood to the digestive system. This deprives the brain of the usual flow of blood (and oxygen) and a brain with less blood and oxygen is a sleepy brain.

But there may be other contributing factors besides food that is causing you to feel so sleepy. The Thanksgiving holiday is a time when people often take a break from their hard, busy, work schedules. When you factor in the lower stress due to time off work, combined with the comfort of a comfy coach and full belly, you are destined to doze off!

On a side note. When you are busy digesting your Thanksgiving meal, make sure to check out our biggest sales event of the year! You can blame your sleepiness on being comfortable once you have your free Slumber Cloud Cotton Throw Blanket!

One the topic of digestion, if you need help digesting your Thanksgiving feast, I found some great tips to help speed along the process.

Try some Yoga poses:

Jenny Sugar at POPSUGAR designed this yoga pose to get things flowing and moving naturally.

Standing Forward Bend Pose

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Louisa Larson

A calming pose to begin with, forward bends like this one massage your internal organs and increase circulation.

  • Begin inMountain Pose at the front of your mat. Inhale and reach your arms straight above you.
  • As you exhale, engage your abs, and fold forward with a straight back. Tuck your chin in toward your chest, relax your shoulders, and extend the crown of the head toward the floor to create a long spine. Shift weight forward into your toes, straightening the legs as much as possible. Place your hands on the ground, fingertips lining up with the toes.
  • Hold here for five breaths.

 

Digestive No-No’s:

Dr. John Douillard from LifeSpa® came up with these 5 digestive no-no’s that will help you feel outstanding after your Thanksgiving feast!

  • Don’t drink cold or iced water with this meal!
  • Take a few minutes to relax, get settled, and say some form of blessing or grace before eating. Do not start eating until you are really settled, calm and ready to eat and enjoy each bite with awareness!
  • Don’t watch TV while eating.
  • Don’t eat standing up.
  • Don’t pig out on bread first. It is heavy and hard to digest and before you know it, you will be full!

 

Sleep Well,

William