Debunking Common Holiday Food Myths

Debunking Common Holiday Food Myths

Publish Date September 18, 2023 3 Minute Read
Author Kroger Health Team

Debunking Festive Food Myths

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, marking the start of a season full of holiday feasts, festivities and, for better or worse, the return of many food-related myths. Does turkey really make you sleepy? Are fresh green beans better than frozen? Let’s debunk some of the most common holiday food myths, so you can feast on the facts.

Myth: Turkey Makes You Sleepy

After 2 plates piled high, your eyes start to get heavy. Is the turkey to blame, or is something else happening? While it’s no secret that turkey contains tryptophan, which can contribute to relaxation and sleepiness, you might be surprised to learn the amount of tryptophan found in turkey is comparable to most other meats.

Truth: The true culprit is increased blood flow to the stomach. While your digestive system’s working hard on your second helping, there’s less blood flowing to the brain. Want to skip the post-meal drowsiness? Pack your seconds in a to-go container to enjoy later.

Myth: Alcohol Evaporates Off When Cooked.

Many family holiday recipes call for a splash of wine, rum, vodka or a seasonal liqueur to boost flavor and add a festive kick. But does that spirited addition really get cooked out? Surprisingly, the answer is no. Not usually, at least.

Truth: While cooking or baking helps to reduce the potency of the alcohol, it’s typically not fully evaporated. So, if you need an alcohol-free version, it’s best to omit alcohol altogether.

Myth: Fresh Is Better Than Frozen

When your recipe calls for veggies, you’ve got options. Is fresh always better than frozen? The short answer is no.

Truth: Fresh vegetables are less processed than their frozen counterparts, but they’re typically picked before they’ve fully ripened to allow for transport and storage. This can actually diminish the amount of nutrients present. Frozen veggies, on the other hand, are picked and preserved during peak ripeness, helping to lock in flavor and nutrients. While freezing may cause nutrient loss, it’s usually minimal. The verdict? Fresh and frozen are both healthy and delicious, so use what works best with your recipe.

Ready to Plan Your Holiday Menu?

Visit our blog for even more holiday inspiration, like Thanksgiving cooking hacks, hosting tips, decorating and more.

Disclaimer: This information is educational only and is not meant to provide healthcare recommendations. Please see a healthcare provider.