Good Reasons to Eat Turkey All Year Long

Turkey isn't just for the holiday season. Try the following ideas for incorporating turkey into your healthy eating habits

Credit: Flickr /46137

Include turkey in your meals throughout the year as a healthy substitute for red meat

Turkey is a holiday tradition in Canada, but you don’t have to wait for a special occasion to serve this nutritious bird

Roast turkey is delicious and nutritious anytime
(Image: Mike)

Turkey is naturally high in protein and low in both fat and cholesterol, making it a great substitute for red meat (see chart below).

Turkey also provides selenium, vitamins B3 and B6, phosphorous, zinc and tryptophan – the amino acid that helps regulate sleep.

Different Ways to Cook with Turkey

Whole turkey and turkey pieces (breasts, thighs and ground meat) allow for great meal creativity.

Enjoy turkey in soups, stews, casseroles, stir-fries, curries, wraps or burgers. Add shredded turkey breast to enchiladas; enjoy breaded and baked turkey breasts topped with tomato sauce and low-fat cheese; add sautéed lean ground turkey to spaghetti sauce, lasagna or chili; or enjoy leftover turkey in Mexican Turkey Soup.

Nutritional Value of Turkey vs. Beef and Pork

Meat (3 oz./85g portion) Calories Protein (grams) Total Fat 
(grams) Saturated Fat 
(grams) Cholesterol (milligrams)
Turkey Breast 117 26 0.6 0.2 72
Turkey Thigh 140 23 5 1.5 65
Beef (top loin, steak) 174 24 7.8 3.0 59
Pork (top loin, chop) 167 23 7.8 2.7 62
Turkey, ground white meat 
(99% fat free) 98 20 1.5 0 45
Ground beef (80/20 mix) 230 22 15 5.7 77

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.