As another Thanksgiving rolls around, it’s time to get out the roaster and prepare another turkey to ring in the holiday season. But what do we know about this wild bird besides that nearly every home serves it for Thanksgiving? There is plenty to learn.
Along with chicken, turkey has quickly become a favorite of those on low-fat diets according to Homecooking.about.com. Health studies have also shown that cooking turkey with the skin on seals in the natural juices and the fat from skin does not seep into the turkey. To avoid any extra fat just make sure to remove the skin before eating.
According to Urbanext.illinois.edu, one good thing about the nutritional value of turkey is that it is very low in fat and high in protein. In fact it only has 1 gram of fat per ounce of flesh. It is also a good source of iron, zinc, phosphorus, potassium and B vitamins. All of these nutrients have been found to keep blood cholesterol down, protect against birth defects, cancer and heart disease, aid in nerve function and growth, boost the immune system and regulate blood pressure.
The fat and calorie amounts vary though because white meat has fewer calories and less fat than dark meat and skin. Turkey is also naturally low in sodium. It typically contains less than 25 milligrams (mg) of sodium per ounce on average.
The meat fiber in turkey is easier to digest than other types of meat, so that makes turkey a good choice for individuals that have digestion problems.
While turkey is already a nutritious meat, it can be made even more nutritious if you stick to white turkey meat and if it is prepared using a low-fat cooking method, such as baking, broiling, or grilling. You can also try steaming the turkey or poaching the turkey pieces in water, wine or a broth with herbs and spices. Another healthful and delicious way to prepare a turkey is to sauté it in as little oil as possible, using broth, lemon or orange juice as a basting sauce.
Now that you know more about this delectable and nutritious bird you will enjoy this year’s Thanksgiving meal even more.