Ever since I can remember, I heard that eating turkey makes you sleepy. Now, research says that's not true. What? Really? I just want to flop after Thanksgiving turkey dinner. What gives?

man sleeping on chair
Chaloner Woods, Hulton Archive, Getty Images

According to an article by Carey Polis on huffingtonpost.com:

"You eat a big meal -- which includes a generous helping of turkey -- and all of a sudden you're feeling like you really want to lie down and take a nap. "It's the tryptophan," says Aunt Doris or Grandma Peggy or that cousin who always makes a big point of announcing that she's watching her weight this year.Unfortunately, the reality is that you just ate way too much.

Tryptophan does not make you sleepy. In order for tryptophan to make you sleepy, you have to eat foods that contain it on an empty stomach, and without any other amino acids or proteins. That's pretty much impossible on Thanksgiving.

Then why do you feel so sluggish after eating Thanksgiving food? That's likely thanks to all the carbohydrates you're consuming in the form of desserts and sides. And, let's not forget that alcohol doesn't help either."

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