We are only three days away from one of my favorite holidays. Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and be grateful for friends, family and relationships. For some, it holds strong religious roots and for others (like my dad) it’s an entire day devoted to watching football. Traditionally, however, it is a day to give thanks for a bountiful harvest. As you sit down this year to a beautiful meal, savor and enjoy the balance of flavors and textures and be thankful for the perfect combination of nutrients in your meal. Those nutrients works together to nourish your body.
- Be thankful for turkey– a 3 ounce portion is a great source of protein and a good source of iron, niacin, zinc, potassium and other B-vitamins, including B-12.
- Be thankful for potatoes– a medium potato (with the skin) is a great source of potassium and contributes to your daily needs for vitamin C, fiber and even iron.
- Be thankful for sweet potatoes– these nutritional gems are a great source of vitamin A, fiber, vitamin B6, potassium and manganese.
- Be thankful for squash– whether acorn, butternut or spaghetti, this lovely vegetable also supplies the meal with benefits beyond belief. Full of beta carotene and also loaded with fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, folate and other B vitamins.
- Be thankful for bread stuffing– traditionally used to stuff the turkey, today it is often prepared in a variety of ways that can add crunch, color and flavor to the plate. A basic bread stuffing contributes to our daily need of iron, vitamin A, magnesium, phosphorus and a variety of B vitamins including folate, niacin and thiamin.
- Be thankful for cranberries– whether fresh, frozen or as a sauce or relish, cranberries are a perfect way to add flavor and color to the thanksgiving plate. The berries specifically are a great source of vitamin C and are loaded with health boosting antioxidants.
- Be thankful for pumpkin pie– yes even pumpkin pie contributes to the overall nutrition profile of the Thanksgiving Day meal. Packed full of vitamin A, it also contributes a generous amount of iron, phosphorus, calcium, zinc, riboflavin and other B vitamins.
What other foods are part of your traditional Thanksgiving?