The big meal, football and time with your family get all the headlines at Thanksgiving, but one other tradition gets lost in all the hoopla, and it may be the best part of the day.  The nap!

The grocery lists are completed, the food prepared, the family in town, and all the other normal plans for the holiday. We can show your appreciation for all the good things in our lives, and spending time with our families and football...But for so many of us, it's all about the nap.

Here are a few facts:

According to a survey by Dunkin Donuts, 58% of people who participate in Thanksgiving will take a nap,  60% of men compared to 56% of women.  76% of people prefer to sleep after dinner while the rest try to snooze before the big meal.  And 56% of those who are not able to nap on Thanksgiving envy those who can.

Why do we nap?  Another survey by found that eating turkey, which contains tryptophan, does not make you sleepy. Dr. Audri Lanford, who conducted the study, says people would need to consume more tryptophan than the amount contained in a turkey to fall asleep. In fact, once per once cheddar cheese actually contains more tryptophan than turkey, so it seems likely that the macaroni & cheese is more to blame.

Experts say large amounts of carbohydrates and alcohol may be the real cause of a post-Thanksgiving-meal snooze.  The holidays are also a time when people often take a break from their hard work, so maybe we're just tired.

If you want to see more reasons why we nap on Thanksgiving, check out this from Livescience, and sweet dreams!

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