Is Red Meat Good For You?

Is Red Meat Good For You?

Red meat gets eaten a lot in the Pakistani food culture, either in the form of BBQ or as an ingredient of all-time favorite dishes like Biryani. Spicy and flavorful, people of Pakistan love to munch on Gosht. But is red meat even good for you? Let’s evaluate together! 

Classifying Red Meat

Red meat gets defined in two ways. One, it is the red-colored and dark meat. Second, it is the muscle meat of the land mammals that includes beef, lamb, and duck.

Scientifically, any meat with more myoglobin (a type of protein) gets considered as the red meat. In Pakistan, the most common types of red meat are beef, lamb, and mutton. People use these to cook dishes, such as Sajji, Kebab, Kofte, and much more.

Nutrition-At a Glance

Red Meat’s composition happens to be rich. I’d not use the word nutritious, for most often, we tend to kill all of its rich constituents by cooking it inappropriately. Or more accurately, in combination with harmful foodstuff.

Coming back to the rich composition, the most dominant and prominent nutrient that it supplies us with is none other than protein. On average, a hundred grams of Red meat provides about 27 to 35 grams of protein, and when consumed properly, this protein aids in our growth and well-being. It contributes to cell-repair as well.

Secondly, it provides substantial amounts of iron and zinc. Red meat is also a good source of Vitamin B12, which is essential for blood formation as well as the proper functioning and well-being of your brain and nervous system.

For every hundred grams of red meat, you also get 4 to 10 grams of fat. Now that’s not an amount that’ll make you freak out. Right? Then, why do people disregard meat and often even consider it a source of bad fat? Well, the answer to this perplexing reality lies in the cooking methods. Continue reading to learn more about the subject. Quite surprisingly, the fat obtained from red meat provides CLA, i.e., Conjugated Linoleic Acid, which aids in weight loss.

The Bad Side

As mentioned earlier, red meat itself does not threaten the human body in any aspect. Rather it is the way and quality of consumption that greatly determines its impact on your body.

Some red meat has high amounts of saturated fats like beef and lamb. Consuming these regularly and abundantly can increase the risk of her disease. That’s because these raise the level of cholesterol, especially when processed.

The red meat has quite a lot of L-Carnitine. It gets converted to a compound called trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) by the bacteria in the gut, which eventually causes cholesterol-clogged arteries.

Excessive consumption of processed meat can also lead to the development of cancer. That’s because processes like curing and smoking can give birth to cancer-causing agents in the red meat. According to research, it can cause the following types of cancer:

  • Colorectal
  • Prostate
  • Pancreatic
  • Stomach
  • Breast

Does cooking methods matter?

Believe it or not, but the way you cook your food can drastically alter the nutrition level. Most of us get so much enveloped in traditional methods of cooking that we neglect the effect on nutrition to match the taste preferences. Similarly, the way you cook red meat also makes it, either good or bad for you.

When the red meat gets cooked on high flames, such as frying or grilling, it forms some harmful chemicals. The high temperatures form chemicals called heterocyclic amines and polycyclic hydrocarbon amines, which cause changes in the meat’s DNA.

Studies have shown the development of cancer in animals when exposed to these chemicals. However, the chemicals pose a potential threat to humans too.

Hence, it is better to change our cooking methods to avoid the creation of such hazardous chemicals. You can do so by not cooking meat on open flames, and by precooking the meat. You can precook meat in a microwave or oven so that the meat does not get exposed to high temperatures.  Continuous flipping and turning during cooking red meat is also an effective way. To augment the nutrition, you can also add some dark leafy vegetables to the red meat dish.

Final words

Conclusively, we would say that only you can determine whether red meat is good for you or not. That’s because only you can change your eating preferences and habits. Red meat itself does not pose any threat or intend any harm to any healthy human. So, pick your ways of consumption wisely!

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