Stuffed Like a Thanksgiving Turkey? Feast Your Eyes on Hydrogen-Enriched Water!

Last Updated on: July 1, 2022

Thanksgiving is known for its big dinner — and the inevitable post-dinner nap. This Thanksgiving, discover what really makes us tired after our holiday dinner, and learn what you can do to better support your body’s efforts to handle so much food.

Thanksgiving is that great time of the year when we spend time with our family and loved ones — and eat an amazing amount of delicious food, of course. But with the oversized portions and additional helpings often comes the expected post-Thanksgiving dinner food coma and dreaded tight waistline.

This Thanksgiving, try shaking things up a bit with hydrogen water made by an Echo™ machine! With the help of hydrogen-enriched water, you can enjoy your Thanksgiving meal while skipping the food coma and supporting a healthy body weight.

While the tryptophan in turkey is often thought to be the culprit for our post-Thanksgiving dinner nap, it’s actually the large meal itself that’s to blame.

Why Does Thanksgiving Dinner Make You Sleepy?

As you sit down to enjoy your meal of turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potatoes, and green bean casserole, odds are you’ve heard someone mention how eating all that turkey is going to make everyone tired. Thanks to all of the tryptophan in the turkey, we can all expect to curl up on the couch after indulging in one of our favorite meals.

However, researchers and scientists say that the turkey isn’t to blame for our post-dinner sleepiness. While turkey does contain the amino acid L-tryptophan, it actually doesn’t contain any more than other kinds of poultry. In fact, it even has less than chicken. (1) With that said, when we eat food with tryptophan, this amino acid will travel to the brain via the bloodstream after digestion. Once there, the brain changes tryptophan into serotonin, which helps us relax and get sleepy. (2)

Okay, so if tryptophan really can make us sleepy but turkey doesn’t have any more than chicken, why don’t we feel tired after each time we eat poultry? That’s because the tryptophan isn’t to blame for our instant sleepiness. While tryptophan will help us become relaxed and tired, it doesn’t work quick enough for us to feel tired right after our big Thanksgiving meal. Instead, scientists say that the big meal itself is to blame.

Eating a big meal causes our bodies to direct more blood flow to the stomach and digestive system, which reduces the amount of blood flow to the brain and extremities. (2, 3) Plus, foods high in fat, carbs, and sugar trigger a neural response in the parasympathetic nervous system as soon as they hit the small intestines (which can happen as quickly as 15 minutes after dessert); this response tells the body to slow down and focus on digestion. (3, 4)

As a normal part of digestion, the body will release insulin; however, as the amount of food increases, so does the amount of insulin. Insulin increases the amount of both serotonin (the feel-good, relaxing hormone) and melatonin (the sleep hormone) that flow to the brain. (4) As a result, the need to digest so much food and the increase of insulin can quickly lead to feelings of fatigue.

How To Avoid the Thanksgiving Food Coma

While overeating can be expected on a day like Thanksgiving, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to miss out on the rest of the evening by napping on the couch. This Thanksgiving, try these tips and tricks to help stay awake after eating an oversized dinner.

People chatting in kitchen while drinking water from Echo H2 hydrogen water pitcher
Drinking hydrogen water can boost energy and promote better digestion after your Thanksgiving dinner.

Drink Hydrogen Water

A great way to help maintain energy after a hefty Thanksgiving meal is to drink Echo™ hydrogen water. Infused with one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants, molecular hydrogen, hydrogen water from an Echo™ machine is a great way to naturally boost energy, promote better digestion, and even avoid gaining those extra holiday pounds.

Molecular hydrogen has been shown in several studies to promote a natural energy boost. In fact, one study found that drinking hydrogen-enriched water can decrease levels of insulin, plasma glucose, and triglyceride. (5) By lowering insulin levels in particular (which increases as the body digests larger amounts of food), hydrogen-enriched water can help keep your energy levels up. Not only that, but molecular hydrogen has been shown to stimulate energy metabolism, which is the body’s natural way of releasing energy. (5, 6)

Another major benefit of molecular hydrogen is that it can help improve your digestion. One study found that drinking electrolyzed water with molecular hydrogen can increase the amount of bifidobacterium in the digestive system. (7) Bifidobacterium is a group of “good” bacteria you want in your gut; in fact, they are the most important probiotics you can have because of their ability to break down a large number of carbon sources in our diet. (8)

In addition to boosting energy and promoting proper digestion, molecular hydrogen has been found to aid in healthy weight loss. It does this by giving us an energy boost to exercise, increasing endurance, and reducing fatigue. As a result, we have a greater ability to exercise longer and harder — and to avoid gaining those few extra pounds over the holidays. For more information about how hydrogen water can help with weight loss, check out this blog post.

To help keep your energy up and enjoy better digestion this Thanksgiving, try drinking Echo™ hydrogen water throughout the day before your big meal, as well as during dinner. Doing so may just give your body the boost it needs to avoid the post-dinner food coma and a few extra pounds.

Other Tips to Avoid the Thanksgiving Food Coma

In addition to drinking hydrogen water, try these other tips to help you avoid the post-Thanksgiving dinner food coma (2):

  • Eat small, healthy meals throughout the day. Don’t starve yourself until dinner.
  • Drink water and take breaks while eating your dinner to see how full you are.
  • Eat smaller portions of the various tasty dishes that fill the dinner table.
  • Stop eating when you’re full. There are always leftovers for tomorrow!
  • Take a walk after eating to help with digestion.
This Thanksgiving, you can enjoy both a healthier body and a more grateful heart.

A Healthy Body, A Grateful Heart

This Thanksgiving, we all have a lot to be grateful for, including an amazing body that makes it possible for each of us to enjoy life. This year, try giving your body an extra hand with all of the hard work it has to do. With hydrogen-enriched water and a few other minor changes, you can enjoy your Thanksgiving dinner while also improving your health.

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