Should you be worried about Thanksgiving?

With Halloween over, Thanksgiving is right around the corner.

On this holiday, most people look forward to food, friends and family, sports, and a break from work and school. 

This holiday is not only dedicated to being grateful but also to eating as much food as you want. But is picking up that second or third plate worth it? Your family is making all the dishes you’ve been waiting for. Who wouldn’t? 

You are probably not spending your Thanksgiving night worried about all the calories or unhealthy food you’re digesting, but much of the food eaten on Thanksgiving does not really have that much of a positive impact on your body.

 During a Thanksgiving feast, the average American consumes nearly 4,500 calories, according to the Calorie Control Council. Foods like stuffing, mashed potatoes, and cornbread all have a high amount of calories and contain various fatty ingredients. This does not necessarily mean that people should not enjoy themselves, it simply means they should just be careful with the food they consume. 

For starters, over-eating can make you feel things you wouldn’t normally feel on a regular day. When you are full and continue to eat, you mess with the natural vegetative cell responses that signal fullness. Once those messages get mixed up, your body has a tougher time figuring out whether you are still hungry or not, leading you to continue eating. 

Unhealthy weight gaining is a symptom of over-eating that can lead to obesity, which is linked to diabetes, heart diseases, and more deadly sicknesses. While Thanksgiving is the one time of the year families and friends come together to celebrate a meal and the things they are grateful for, people can lose a handle on things. 

When eating any type of carbohydrates such as cranberry sauce, cornbread, or sweet potatoes, your blood sugar rises. To help process all the glucose in your body, insulin is released, causing your blood pressure to drop. This could cause headaches and make you feel very dizzy or nauseous. 

Considering this, some firmly believe that it’s important to consider health at the dinner table.

“I believe it’s reasonable to think about your health [during Thanksgiving] because staying healthy is extremely important. Having a good diet and keeping away from certain foods can save your life,” senior Sirena Clemons said.

After a huge meal, the body often goes into a food coma, a normal state of drowsiness, or weariness. This may result in fatigue and brain fog because the body is working on digesting a meal significantly larger than one would normally eat. 

However, aside from over-eating and rising blood pressure, food poisoning can also be common. 

Many people have been advised to stay away from Romaine lettuce due to its connection to E. coli because they have gotten sick and hospitalized as a result. In fact, Romaine lettuce has been recalled for E.coli because a number of people have recently gotten sick. 

Raw turkey has also been responsible for causing salmonella outbreaks after Thanksgiving over the years.

While deaths may be rare from this, it has occurred in the past, serving as a reminder to be wary of the foods you are consuming. 

On this holiday, though, worrying about their health is probably not someone’s number one priority. Instead, they enforce the importance of gratitude. 

“I think that during Thanksgiving you shouldn’t stress about if you are eating right or not, you should just be happy that you’re eating,” junior Shada Ibrahim states. 

On the other hand, some say considering the holiday’s importance should be the only thing to worry about. 

“If you deny someone’s food at the table because you are trying to stay healthy on that specific day, it kind of seems like you are being ungrateful for the food which defeats the purpose of Thanksgiving,” senior Zariyah Brown said.

Having a full plate and dessert is completely fine, but remember to be careful when eating to guarantee your safety during these warm and happy times.