BEEF NUTRITIONAL FACTS and TIPS
The Health Benefits of Beef
(according to Reader’s Digest “Foods that Harm, Foods That Heal“)
- Helps prevent anemia – Beef is a good source of iron, which your body uses to carry oxygen in the blood. Many teenage girls and women in their child-bearing years have iron-deficiency anemia.
- Aids weight loss – The protein in beef can keep hunger at bay by reducing the impact of blood sugar after meals.
- Serves as healthy building blocks – The protein in beef functions as building blocks for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin and blood. They are also building blocks for enzymes, hormones and vitamins.
- Strengthens immunity – A 3-oz serving of lean, cooked beef provides more than 25% of your required selenium, a trace mineral essential in a healthy immune system
Health Risks (according to Reader’s Digest “Foods that Harm, Foods That Heal“)
- Heart disease – Beef fat contains saturated fat, which can increase blood cholesterol levels and the risk of cardiovascular disease. Choose leaner cuts and smaller portions.
- Cancer risk – A high-meat diet may raise the risk of colon cancer and other cancers.
- Harmful bacteria – Raw beef may contain Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, E. coli and salmonella. You can avoid consuming these bacteria by handling the meat properly and cooking it thoroughly. Be careful, too, of cross-contaminating raw food (and its juices) with cooked. This may be a problem especially with ground beef.
- Pink slime – It’s estimated that 70% of the ground beef in the U.S. contains pink slim – which are lean bits of meat derived from muscle and connective tissue. These beef trimmings are often treated with ammonia to kill the E. coli, salmonella and other bacteria they may contain because the trimmings are cut from the outside of the meat, where bacteria are most likely to live.
- Hormone-fed cattle – Some researchers are concerned that hormone-fed cattle can pass on complications such as increased risk for some types of cancer. And for those who want to avoid hormones in beef, choose meats grown organically.
Tips (from Reader’s Digest “Foods that Harm, Foods That Heal“)
Trim the fat
Trim all visible fat from your meat. Reduce fat further by broiling, grilling, or roasting on a rack (so fat can drip away).
Another approach is to cook stews and soups in advance, chill them so that the congealed fat can be removed easily, and then reheat the dishes before serving.
A quick way to remove fat is to drop an ice cube into the cooled liquid. The fat will harden around the ice cube and can be easily removed.
Instead of making gravy or sauce, serve your mea “au jus,” after skimming off all the fat.
Want more information? Just ask!