Many of us have been told that chicken and turkey are better than steak or pork for a healthy diet; but, why? What makes poultry so special? Should we avoid red meat? Let’s compare the fact and find out!
What’s the biggest concern when it comes to meat? The concern is fat; and more specifically, saturated fat. Diets higher in saturated fat have been shown to be associated with higher cholesterol levels, obesity, and higher risk of heart disease; so, we can see why too much red meat may cause a problem. But, don’t be fooled. Saturated fat is generally found in animal products; and, poultry is, indeed, an animal!
When looking at poultry vs red meats, the important points with regards to managing weight and heart health are: Calories, fat, and saturated fat. Check out this chart comparing nutrient levels for chicken vs. steak.
Are you surprised that some of the highest saturated fat content is in certain cuts of chicken? We can see, though, that we can limit Calories, fat and saturated fat by removing the skin; but remember, it’s not always what we are cooking, but the way we cook it that could be doing us in!
Frying protein (deep fry, pan fry, stir fry) requires cooking in oils, which add Calories and fat. Baking, grilling, roasting, broiling are all examples of low-fat cooking methods that won’t amp up the Calories in your meal. Use a low-fat, low sodium salad dressing to marinade, or try herbs/spices to season your meat without the fat and salt.