The 5 types of meat, their properties and disadvantages
Meat has always been one of the main ingredients used in the diets of many cultures and human societies. Its consumption is as old as the origins of our species, and its nutritional characteristics, as well as the methods by which it has been obtained, have had a clear influence on the development of history.
But this food is not something totally homogenous and without variants, but there are different types of meat that is good to know. After all, the only thing that these pieces of food have in common is that they are part of the muscular mass of a wide range of animal species, and many of them do not resemble each other at all.
But knowing how to recognize the types of meat is not a matter of pure interest in the theory; It also has very practical utilities. For example, you should know that abusing some of them can lead to important health problems, so to maintain a balanced diet it is necessary to be clear about the characteristics that define them.
Red and white meats: a basic distinction
To begin this classification, it is good to know the two major categories of types of meat. It’s about red meats, on the one hand, and white meats, on the other .
Red meats, in general, are less healthy than white meat, and that is why it is necessary to moderate their consumption more. One of the reasons for this is that it contains a greater amount of purines, substances that have once passed into the body to transform into uric acid , which is harmful if its amount reaches a certain level.
The white meats do not comply with the characteristic that we have seen that describes red meats, and also tend to be lighter . But that does not mean that they are healthy in any context. For example, they often contain a large amount of bad fats, although this is not always the case and depends, in part, on the area from which the cut comes: thigh, loin, etc.
The types of meat
We have already seen how the main categories that describe the types of meat are, but we can still reach a higher level of detail. For this it is necessary to attend to the type of species or family of species from which this food comes.
Below you will find a summary about the types of meat that are most commonly consumed in Western countries.
This type of meat is one of the most consumed. However, being red meat is preferable to include it in the maximum menu once every two or three weeks, and no more, because of its concentration of purines and bad fats . Or, better yet, not consume it at all and opt for other sources of protein. However, it is also known to be very popular for its flavor.
This is a type of white meat that is also highly consumed, usually turning to chicken. In addition, in most cases the concentration of fat in this class of animals is low; This makes this food is used by people who are interested in developing their muscles without gaining fat. An exception is the case of duck meat, whose consumption is preferable to moderate.
It is another type of white meat, and one of those that contain less fat (being this, in addition, mostly healthy, to be unsaturated). On the other hand, it is also characterized as a food rich in vitamin B.
As much as red meat is usually associated with large mammals, the truth is that most of the pork consists of white meat. In addition, the fat it contains is usually relatively low.
Despite what we have seen about this food, we must be careful when cooking it , since many times these processes go through frying a lot, with which its fat and calorie content goes up a lot.
4. Goat and sheep
Unlike rabbit meat, for example, the fat it contains is saturated, making it unhealthy. However, goat meat is rather low in fat, so it can be consumed occasionally in diets designed to lose weight or not cover muscle.
Fish is usually high in Omega 3 , a very healthy type of fat that we also find in nuts like nuts. In addition, it is generally low in fat, so it is a good source of protein.
A balanced diet
To live a healthy life we must bear in mind that our lifestyles lead us to consume, as a rule, more meat than we need. It is true that protein is essential, but there are many more sources from which to extract these macronutrients : for example, tofu or seitan. In particular, red meat has become the second dish par excellence. Substituting it for healthier options, instead of yielding to simple habit, can contribute a lot to our well-being.