Letter to the editor

November 24, 2008

Give thanks without meat

To the editor:

As friends and family gather to share a heart Thanksgiving feast, millions of Americans will be sitting down to a completely meatless meal.

As a dietitian, I applaud the growing number of Americans who forego high-fat holiday fare and indulge instead in a cornucopia of healthful and delicious vegetarian foods.

The abundance of fatty foods at most Thanksgiving tables means 'tis the season for weight gain. Being overweight or obese can contribute to heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some forms of cancer.


In fact, a new study in the British Journal of Cancer found that obese women are 70 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer, as compared to women with little excess weight.

But here's something to be thankful for: Meatless holiday meals of lentils, winter squash, nuts and perhaps a soy- or wheat-based "turkey" can help Americans stay trim and prevent diseases. For delicious holiday recipes that can be enjoyed all year, go to

Krista Haynes, R.D.
Staff dietitian
The Cancer Project
Washington, D.C.

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