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This article is part of a larger article titled "100+ Healthiest Foods On Planet Earth."  Read it here.

Turkey Nutritional Information (per 100g)

Water: 75.4 g
Calories: 112 kcal
Protein: 22.6 g
Carbohydrate: 0.1 g
Sugars: 0.1 g
Fat: 1.9 g
Saturated fat: 0.5 g
Monounsaturated fat: 0.5 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.4 g
Cholesterol: 67 mg
Vitamin B1: 0.1 mg
Vitamin B2: 0.2 mg
Vitamin B3: 8.1 mg
Vitamin B6: 0.7 mg
Vitamin B9: 7 μg
Vitamin B12: 1.2 μg
Vitamin A: 9 μg
Vitamin E: 0.1 mg
Vitamin D: 0.2 μg
Calcium: 11 mg
Iron: 0.9 mg
Magnesium: 27 mg
Phosphorus: 190 mg
Potassium: 235 mg
Sodium: 118 mg
Zinc: 1.8 mg

Turkey is a food generally eaten once a year in the US and UK, at either Thanksgiving or Christmas, which is then promptly forgotten about. But turkey is interesting for more reasons than its annual appearance on some family tables. Turkey is a fantastic lean protein source, being even better than chicken breast in that regard, and is ideal for anyone following high-protein diets for whatever reason (an example would be cutting weight for a sporting competition). In addition, turkey boasts a wide variety of essential nutrients, and unlike both red meat and processed foods (other great protein sources), has no association with serious disease.

100g of raw ground turkey contains 148 calories, and 19.5g of protein. Or, put it another way, 7% of your Daily Value (DV) of calories, for 39% of your DV of protein. To say that turkey is a great protein source is obvious; but what about the rest of the nutrition present? Well, turkey contains 28% DV of vitamin B6, 17% DV of vitamin B12, 16% DV of Zinc, 7% DV of potassium, and 6% DV of magnesium.

With all of these nutrients playing a variety of roles in the body, it is of course extremely important that you get these essential minerals. To give a brief example, zinc is involved in cell division, which means deficiencies can affect the immune system, cardiovascular health, mood, sleep, athletic performance, and fertility. And that’s just one mineral! Any food where you can get high amounts of nutrition for minimal calories is an excellent find.

Interestingly, as with chicken, turkey is often eaten in large quantities because of the association of red meat with health problems. Observational studies show a link between red meat intake and cancer: colorectal and breast cancer, for example.

However, studies on white vs red meat have been far from conclusive, and one study found an association between processed foods and higher incidence of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes, but crucially, found no such link with red meat, implying that it is in fact processed food that may really be the thing to avoid. Regardless of viewpoint is true, the take-home message is that organic, unprocessed and lean turkey is a fantastically healthy food.