6 Healthy Benefits of Eating Beef
Past generations have viewed beef as a nutritious and healthy. These days, however, it’s much different and the opinion is split between whether beef is good or bad for our health. Here at Five Star Home Foods we recognize the nutritional importance of beef, and as such only provide the highest quality American-raised Angus beef. And, whatever our opinion on red meat might be, there are important health benefits of eating beef, so what are they?
1. Beef is high in protein and helps build muscle mass 2. Beef is extremely rich in minerals 3. Beef helps prevent iron deficiency anemia 4. Beef contains carnosine 5. Beef is full of vitamins 6. Beef contains natural creatine
1. Beef is High in Protein and Helps Improve Muscle Mass Eating protein every day is important, our bodies need it. Proteins supply the building blocks our bodies need (called amino acids) that help us repair and build muscle, bone, skin, hair, cartilage, and more. Daily protein also helps our bodies main our lean body mass, also known as muscle mass. And, of all the nutrients, proteins are very satiating and help make us feel fuller long, preventing unnecessary cravings. Beef is packed with health-promoting amino acids, and it’s one of the single biggest sources of protein in the human diet. For instance, a 6oz (170g) portion of 80% lean beef provides 46g protein. Should we opt for a leaner variety of beef, the protein content increases!
2. Beef is Extremely Rich in Minerals Beef is also very rich in minerals like potassium, phosphorous, magnesium and iron. In fact, a 6oz portion will give you (%DV): Copper 10% Iron 18% Magnesium: 7% Phosphorus: 40% Potassium: 10% Selenium: 50% Zinc: 65% For people with certain mineral deficiencies, beef is an excellent source of nutrition! 3. Eating Beef Helps Prevent Iron Deficiency Anemia One nutrient deficiency worth mentioning is Iron Deficiency Anemia (IDA). According to Dr. Ian Griffin, “Iron deficiency remains a major public health issue even in a developed country such as the United States.” Currently, iron deficiency affects 10% of the population, with half of this deficiency IDA. It can be traced to changes in quality of dietary intake.
4. Beef Contains Carnosine Another advantage of eating beef is that it provides an abundance of carnosine, 50% more than other proteins like poultry. Carnosine (beta-analyl-L-histidine) is created by combining the amino acids alanine and histidine. It is found throughout the body and has several important roles in human health, most notably in exercise performance and muscle mass balance.
What Does Carnosine Do? For one thing carnosine has anti-glycosylation properties. What this means is that carnosine reduces the harms of a process called ‘glycation,’ directly related to human aging. Carnosine is also helpful in exercise performance, skeletal muscle homeostasis, and it even boost the immune system and can reduce inflammation. The compound is also thought to help prevent lipid peroxidation within our cells.
5. Beef is Full of Vitamins There are many important nutrients in beef, and those present in significant amounts include the range of B vitamins, which are vital to energy metabolism (amount per 6oz 80/20 beef %DV): Vitamin B1 6% Vitamin B2 20% Vitamin B3 45% Vitamin B5 17% Vitamin B6 42% Vitamin B12 152% Folate 3% Additionally, beef also contains smaller amounts of vitamins E and K. Of importance, Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is an essential nutrient only available from animal foods. This vitamin also has a wealth of benefits that include skin improvements, positive mood, better sleep, and neural regeneration. It’s important to realize that insufficient vitamin B12 may also increase the risk of depression and mental health issues.
6. Beef Contains the Natural Creatine Almost everyone knows the dietary supplement version of creatine, but did you know that beef contains it too? In fact, beef typically contains 350mg creatine per 100g The health benefits of creatine:
Improved exercise performance
Creatine assists in muscle growth and development
Provides muscles with greater energy supply and improves endurance
Increased muscular size
It’s also worth noting that our liver can produce about 2g creatine per day, depending on the pre-cursors being available. Creatine precursors include arginine, glycine, and methionine. Not only are all of these amino acids present in beef, but beef is a single most significant dietary sources; in other words, eating beef gives you a decent amount of dietary creatine, and it helps your body to produce it too! Final Thoughts Beef contains dozens of health-promoting nutrients that we need in our diet. Overall, it is one of the most nutrient-dense foods in the human diet, and has been for many generations.