Ready for Thanksgiving 2014 America? Before you start stuffing your face-hole with buttery wads of starch and turkey, you might want to check out these #5facts on Thanksgiving food from Matt Silverman (@matt_silverman) and Annie Colbert (@anniecolbert). A video from their YouTube channel is below.
Before stuffing was called… stuffing, it was called “forcemeat.” Grandma, please pass the forcemeat. Yum!
Photo via OwlHere
02) The 1% Nation of Corn
America is the #1 producer of corn in the world, but Americans (aka the “Other Animals” in the chart below) only eat 1% of the corn that they produce. The rest of the corn is used to feed livestock or create fuel, like ethanol.
03) Giant Turkey Boobs
100% of all farm raised turkeys are artificially inseminated. This is because they have been genetically modified to have bigger breasts and can’t reproduce on their own. Their breasts are actually so big that it “physically gets in the way when the male and the female try to create offspring” according to Julie Long from Freakonomics Radio. The one exception is probably the Kramer Turkey.
04) Wild Potatoes Will Kill You
The next time you find yourself stranded in the wilderness with no food, stay away from any wild potatoes that you might find. They are poisonous… unless you dip them in clay “gravy.”
Wild potatoes are laced with solanine and tomatine, toxic compounds believed to defend the plants against attacks from dangerous organisms like fungi, bacteria and human beings. Cooking often breaks down such chemical defenses, but solanine and tomatine are unaffected by heat. In the mountains, guanaco and vicuña (wild relatives of the llama) lick clay before eating poisonous plants. The toxins stick—more technically, “adsorb”—to the fine clay particles in the animals’ stomachs, passing through the digestive system without affecting it. Mimicking this process, mountain peoples apparently learned to dunk wild potatoes in a “gravy” made of clay and water. Eventually they bred less-toxic potatoes, though some of the old, poisonous varieties remain, favored for their resistance to frost. Clay dust is still sold in Peruvian and Bolivian markets to accompany them.
Source: Smithsonian Mag
05) Thanksgiving Conspiracies
What if we told you almost everything about your Thanksgiving meal is a lie?
- After a big Thanksgiving meal, do you prefer to have pumpkin pie or butternut squash pie for dessert? Pumpkin? Too bad. Most canned pumpkin is actually flavored butternut squash.
- Do you normally have a side of cranberry sauce with your Thanksgiving meal? The “cranberry” is another lie. Botanically speaking, the cranberry isn’t even a berry.
- The sweet potato is a Thanksgiving staple. However, biologically, sweet potatoes are closer to a Marigold flower than a potato.
Poisonous starch, food lies and artificially inseminated meats aside, we hope all you Americans out there have a nice Thanksgiving holiday. We’re thankful that out of all of the websites on the Internet, that you’re here on our website reading this. Happy Thanksgiving!
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