There are many different views out there on how much meat we should be eating. According to the latest science, a healthy, balanced diet includes a variety of protein foods from both animal and plant sources. Like meat and poultry, fish, eggs, nuts and beans, are rich in protein and other important nutrients like fibre, omega-3 fatty acids and important micronutrients, including potassium, magnesium, folate, iron, and zinc.
How do you know a reasonable portion of meat when you see it? Visualize the objects mentioned below when eating out, planning a meal, or grabbing a snack. If you’re eating a piece of steak or chicken, the recommended portion size is 3 oz., which is about the size of a bar of soap. For a hamburger patty, it’s 4 oz., which is around the same size as a hockey puck. For deli meats, it’s about 3 medium-cut slices.
Meat in the Mediterranean Diet
The Mediterranean Diet is a way of eating based on the traditional cuisine of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. While there is no single definition of the Mediterranean diet, it is typically high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds, and olive oil. Meat, fish and dairy are eaten often but in moderation.
The Mediterranean diet is considered by many nutritionists to be a very healthy option for longevity and health. Afterall, the Mediterranean people are the some of the longest living people in the world, with the most Centenarians; a person who has reached the age of 100 years.
Are you a Climatarian?
Climatarian is a new term you will be hearing more about. A Climatarian diet is a diet focused on reducing the carbon footprint by supporting companies with environmentally friendly, sustainable food practices, and/or by buying local. The term is used by those who are trying to raise awareness and combat climate change at a personal level. A company’s mission matters to a Climatarian. It’s about making small changes that collectively as a society make a large difference. Like the Flexitarian and Mediterranean eating styles, people choose to reduce eating animal foods but not entirely. Instead, consumers may choose animal products with a lower environmental footprint, such as swapping beef for turkey more often, buying organic meat and incorporating a few plant-based meals each week.
Quality over Quantity
When shopping for fresh meat, aim to buy Organic or meat from animals raised without antibiotics. Organic farming is better for the environment and for your health.
“Organic farming methods offer the best current model for promoting climate-friendly food production. This is because it is less dependent on fossil-fuel-based fertilizers and pesticides and builds resilience in the face of climatic extremes. Organic farming also stores higher levels of carbon in the soil, promotes wildlife diversity, reduces pest outbreaks, protects soil from erosion, helps prevent contamination of water, and uses far less energy than conventional farming methods”
When shopping for deli meats like black forest ham, bacon or sausages, aim to avoid preservatives like sodium nitrite and celery extracts. Celery extracts have been added to many “natural” deli meats with the goal to remove sodium nitrite. However, celery extracts are bio-chemically identical to sodium nitrite. Many studies have proven that consuming nitrites in cooked meat is harmful to your health due to the formation of Nitrosamines, which are carcinogenic.
Choose “Clean” Protein Options and Eat a Balanced Diet
Eating a balanced diet with a variety of plant-based protein and “clean” meat options is easy to follow, nutritious, is health promoting and better for the environment. Avoid extreme diets that eliminate entire food groups and aim for moderation. Variety is fun and good for your health.
Deli meats are a household favourite for many of us because they are convenient, tasty and kids love them.
MCLEAN MEATS is proud to provide organic deli meats that are truly preservative free (no nitrites or celery extracts) and made with “clean” ingredients. Our animals are humanely raised without antibiotics. We list all ingredients on the product pages of our website. Feel free to contact us with any questions or visit our store locator to find a store near you.