Health Benefits - Meat
The health benefits of chicken include its ability to provide a good supply of protein, essential vitamins, and minerals. It also aids in weight loss, regulating cholesterol and blood pressure.
Chicken is the most common type of poultry in the world. It has been domesticated and consumed as food for thousands of years. There are many varieties of chicken, including free-range chicken, organic chicken, and conventional chicken, the difference being on the basis of their breeding. While free-range chicken, as the term implies, is allowed to roam freely in the pastures. This is the healthiest form of chicken, and this form of chicken is the one exclusively used by Chef Med.
Nutritional Value of Chicken
According to the USDA, chicken (100 g) has moisture (65 g), energy (215 kcal), protein (18 g), fat (15 g), saturated fat (4 g), cholesterol (75 mg), calcium (11 mg), iron (0.9 mg), magnesium (20 mg), phosphorus (147 mg), potassium (189 mg), sodium (70 mg), and zinc (1.3 mg).  In terms of vitamins, it contains vitamin C, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin B12, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin D, and vitamin K.
High Protein Content: Chicken breast, with 31 grams of protein per 100 grams, is one of the best foods for protein. Protein plays an important role in our diet. It is made of amino acids, which are the building blocks of our muscles.
Rich in Vitamins & Minerals: It is not only a good source of protein but is also very rich in vitamins and minerals. For example, B vitamins in it are useful for preventing cataracts and skin disorders, boosting immunity, eliminating weakness, regulating digestion, and improving the nervous system. They are also listed as being helpful in preventing migraine, heart disorders, grey hair, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
Vitamin D in chicken helps in calcium absorption and bone strengthening. Vitamin A helps in building eyesight and minerals such as iron are helpful in haemoglobin formation, muscle activity, and eliminating anaemia. Potassium and sodium are electrolytes; phosphorus is helpful in tackling weakness, bone health, brain function, dental care, and metabolic issues.
Weight Loss: Diets with high levels of protein have been known to be effective in reducing weight and chicken has been one of the main contenders in weight loss. Studies and trials have shown that significant weight control was observed in people who regularly ate chicken breast. This can be attributed to its high protein content and low calories.
Control of Blood Pressure and reduced cholesterol: Chicken consumption has been found to be useful in controlling blood pressure as well as cholesterol levels. The American Heart Association has advised consuming chicken or fish instead of high levels of red meat for a lowered risk of cholesterol and subsequent heart disease development.
Lamb fat mainly comes from equal parts saturated and monounsaturated fat. Among the fatty acids, oleic acid is the most predominant. This monounsaturated fatty acid is also the primary fat in olive oil.
Compared to most meat, lamb also has a much higher omega-3content. Fresh meat from pasture-raised lamb used in the Mediterranean diet is the best for provision of omega-3.
Vitamins: Here is the vitamin profile; as shown, lamb is an excellent source of B vitamins – particularly vitamin B12.
VitaminAmount (Grams / % RDA)
Vitamin B12 38%
Vitamin B3 27%
Vitamin B2 11%
Vitamin B5 6%
Vitamin K2 5%
Vitamin B6 5%
Vitamin B1 3%
Vitamin E 1%
Minerals: Lamb is incredibly rich in minerals, especially iron, phosphorus, selenium and zinc.
Lamb has a very healthy nutrition profile and it contains a wide variety of essential nutrients. It is a significant source of B vitamins, zinc and selenium.
Aside from the nutrient profile, lamb has many other nutritional benefits.
Lamb Contains L-Carnosine: L-Carnosine is a compound that contains two amino acids (proteins) bonded together; beta-alanine and histidine. Only certain foods contain carnosine in high amounts, and lamb is one of these. Carnosine is classed as a non-essential nutrient because our bodies can make it internally. However, recent research is showing that higher amounts of carnosine from external sources may offer additional health benefits.
Among these, carnosine appears to have anti-atherosclerotic effects, meaning that it may help to protect against cardiovascular disease. Notably, carnosine also helps to reduce the glycation of sugars and proteins in our body. Glycation directly causes inflammation and oxidative stress, and they are believed to be one of the keys to the aging process.
Lamb is a Significant Source of Complete Protein. Lamb is extremely rich in protein, and depending on the cut it contains anywhere between 25 – 30 grams per 100 grams. Lamb contains every amino acid, and we can, therefore, class it as a ‘complete’ protein. This completeness means that our body can use lamb protein more efficiently than ‘incomplete’ proteins in plant foods. Protein is incredibly important for our health, and it encourages lean muscle mass, the growth and repair of cells, and higher levels of satiety.
Lamb Is Incredibly Nutrient Dense. While some people like to judge food based on how many calories it contains, the caloric load says little about the food’s relative health merits. One of the best measurement of the health properties of a particular food is nutrient density. Lamb is extraordinarily nutrient-dense.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
In the modern world, most people are consuming too much omega-6 and not enough omega-3. This issue is important because omega-3 fatty acids have an anti-inflammatory effect, while omega-6 is pro-inflammatory.
Providing these two essential fatty acids are relatively balanced, they are both useful and beneficial. However, some people are now eating a diet that is approaching 20:1 in favour of omega-6 to omega-3. Removing omega-6 vegetable oils such as soybean oil is a great way to change this. Additionally, consuming omega-3 fatty acids from seafood (especially oily fish and olive oil) helps us to get more omega-3. This is thought to be one of the major benefits of the Mediterranean diet. Land animals can also be rich in omega-3. This is especially the case for animals raised on pasture. As one such animal, lamb tends to be an excellent source of omega-3. Mediterranean diet favours fresh properly farms and pasture-bred animals, as opposed to the north European and American model of industrial battery farming.
Lamb is a red meat, and therefore an Important Source of Heme Iron. Many different foods contain iron and it is present in everything from spinach and kale to bananas and tomatoes. When it comes to digestion and absorption, heme iron is king. In fact, we can absorb approximately 15-35% of heme iron (found in animal foods), but this absorption rate drops to 10-15% for non-heme sources of iron (plant foods).
Lamb Contains a Significant Amount of Creatine. Creatine will be well known to anyone with an interest in working out and/or sporting performance. Markedly, creatine can help to boost muscular endurance, strength and – potentially – muscle mass. Red meat is the most substantial dietary source of creatine and lamb contains approximately 300-500 mg per 100 grams.
Lamb is a Source of the “Master Antioxidant” Glutathione. People often refer to glutathione as “the master antioxidant” because of the critical role it plays in protecting our health and our internal antioxidant defence systems.
Lamb Contains Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA). A meta-analysis of 18 controlled trials demonstrates that supplementing with isolated CLA “produces a modest fat loss in humans”. Furthermore, research shows that people with higher tissue levels of CLA have a reduced risk for myocardial infarction (heart attack). Lamb meat is richer in CLA than any other meat and contains approximately 4 – 19.0 mg CLA per gram of fat content.
Lamb is a Source of Healthy Fats. These kinds of ‘health benefit’ lists generally do not usually mention fat. However, good fat is an essential and healthy part of the human diet. Furthermore, two specific fatty acids in lamb are very beneficial for us:
Omega-3: Lamb meat from animals raised on pasture has similar levels of anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids as some fish.
Oleic acid: This monounsaturated fatty acid is one of the most evidence-based fats and it is widely known as the “heart healthy” fat in olive oil. Research consistently links oleic acid to lower levels of inflammation and better health markers.
Put simply; lamb is one of the tastiest (and healthiest) foods in the world.