The turkey, an animal indigenous to the Americas, was originally domesticated by the Aztecs. Sliced turkey, popular on sandwiches or served as cold cuts, serves as a lean source of many nutrients including protein, minerals and vitamins. It's usually made from the breast or white meat of the turkey and has a mild, almost sweet flavor that blends well with many foods.
Serving Size and Calories
A serving of sliced turkey is 4 ounces, or four slices of meat. A serving of sliced turkey provides 113 calories. Sliced turkey is produced by many companies and is available in a variety of flavors such as smoked, honey, oven-roasted or cracked pepper. Sliced turkey can be purchased year round at most grocery stores.
Sliced turkey meat is a very good source of protein. Protein is necessary in the diet for growth, repair and maintenance of all tissues, cells and organs. A serving of sliced turkey meat has 26 grams of protein. Women need 46 grams of protein daily and men need 56 grams, as recommended by the National Academies' Institute of Medicine. The type of protein in turkey is complete, meaning it provides all nine essential amino acids your body cannot make on its own. Your body can use this maintain to maintain lean muscle tissue, as well as to support your immune system.
Fat and Cholesterol
Sliced turkey is low in fat, providing only 1 gram of fat per serving. The Institute of Medicine recommends adults consume between 20 and 35 grams of fat. Sliced turkey also has cholesterol, providing 50 milligrams per serving. Because your body is able to synthesize cholesterol on its own, there is no daily recommended amount. However, the American Heart Association recommends limiting your cholesterol intake to 300 milligrams, and each serving of sliced turkey contains 17 percent of your daily limit.
Sliced turkey is a very good source of selenium, a mineral that functions as an antioxidant. A serving of sliced turkey has 26 micrograms of selenium, which is 47 percent of the daily amount recommended by the Institute of Medicine. Turkey also contains zinc, a mineral necessary for immune function and wound healing. A serving of sliced turkey provides 19 percent of the recommended daily amount of zinc for women and 14 percent for men.
Turkey meat is a good source of thiamine, a B vitamin. Your body needs thiamine in the diet to metabolize fat, protein and carbohydrates. A serving of sliced turkey provides 0.15 milligram of thiamine. The Institute of Medicine recommends women consume 1.2 mg of thiamine daily. Sliced turkey also provides riboflavin, which is also necessary for energy metabolism. A serving of sliced turkey provides 0.37 mg of riboflavin, which is 34 percent of the recommended amount for women.
Deli meats such as sliced turkey can be a source of the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes, which can cause serious illness in certain people. People at risk for serious illness from Listeria include pregnant women, the elderly, infants and people with weakened immune systems. The Centers for Disease Control recommends pregnant women and other people at risk heat deli meats until steaming before consuming.
- HealthAliciousNess: Turkey White Rotisserie Deli Cut
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes: Macronutrients
- Institute of Medicine: Dietary Reference Intakes: RDA and AI for Vitamins and Elements
- Centers for Disease Control: Preventing Foodborne Illness: Listeriosis
- "Advanced Nutrition and Human Metabolism"; James L. Groff, Sareen S. Gropper; 2000
- Medioimages/Photodisc/Valueline/Getty Images
This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.