Thanksgiving feasts, gluten-free pies and all, reflect shifting eating habits

NEW YORK, N.Y. – At homes across the country on Thanksgiving Day, tables will be set to accommodate everyone from vegans and vegetarians to those trying to eat like cavemen. The increasingly complicated feasts reflect the growing ranks of Americans who’re paying closer attention to the food they put into their bodies.

The reasons for the restrictions vary. With two-thirds of the U.S. population either overweight or obese, many find setting rules helps ward off temptations. Others worry about the long-term impact of artificial dyes, preservatives and antibiotics in their food.

While the dietary quirks of relatives or friends may seem like a mere curiosity on Thanksgiving, they’re reshaping the food industry. Sales of organic packaged foods rose 24 per cent to $11.48 billion over the past five years, according to market researcher Euromonitor International.