Some people believe that eating beef will help to build muscles better as compared to eating chicken. How many of you agree with that?
The truth is that each type of meat source has its own unique amount of nutrient and mineral content. To give you a better idea of what you can expect from each source, let’s run through some of the commonly consumed meats.
Chicken is probably the most common source of meat in our diet. Chicken breast is a popular choice among fitness enthusiasts because it is a lean meat. 100 grams of chicken breast can contain between 18 to 20 grams of protein. Another reason why chicken breast could be the go-to for so many people is the price and availability of it. Chicken breast is can be conveniently bought at markets and is usually cheaper than other meat options.
Contrary to popular belief, turkey is not only available during Christmas. It is usually found frozen because the market demand for it is quite low here in Singapore. You can find 23 to 24 grams of protein per 100 grams of raw turkey breast. That’s the highest protein content among all meat! Turkey also contains Tryptophan which is a type of amino acid, a component of the brain chemical serotonin, which gets converted into melatonin, making you sleepy. However, there is plenty of research stating this is just a small amount and will not affect the body too much.
It has been about 12 years since I have embraced Islam. Ever since then, I have not consumed pork. But I remember that my favourite was pig trotters though! In some research, lean cut pork is more superior than chicken breasts in terms of mineral and vitamin content. 100grams of lean pork contains about 19-21grams of protein.
There are a lot of fish available in the marketplace but for bulk cooking and cost considerations, usually tilapia, salmon, halibut, pollock, tuna and dory fish are commonly eaten. 100 grams of fish can yield about 18-20 grams of protein. However, fatty fish like salmon, halibut and tuna yield more omega 3 than the other fish listed above. Omega 3 helps to reduce inflammation in your body and provides a lot of benefits. Buying frozen or fresh fish from the market does not really matter as both are fresh. I have actually talked to a fishmonger and he told me that frozen products are much fresher because they are frozen the minute they are caught. Fish prices vary according to the their portion size and variety.
Now we’re getting to my favourite choice of meat which is beef. Beef is commonly known for its high amount of iron mineral and creatine. What is creatine? It is a type amino acid which increases muscle strength by drawing water into muscle cells, making them stronger. 100 grams of beef can contain up to 20 grams of protein. Prices of beef can vary according to whether you are purchasing grain fed or grass fed beef and the price also differs by the type of cuts.
Coming back to the question I asked earlier of whether beef is better than chicken. Well, I hope that this article helped you to understand that no one meat is superior than the other and that this is entirely a personal choice. Each different kind of meat has their own nutritional value. Plus, it is not advisable to only stick to a certain source of meat for a prolonged period of time.
I would advise to get a variety of meat in your daily intake. I used to eat nothing but beef for months. Now, I am eating chicken, fish and beef in a single day. Likewise for my source of carbohydrates, I am now taking portions of white rice, sweet potatoes and pasta in a day as opposed to just basmati rice back then.
Whether you are a bodybuilder, fitness enthusiast or a loyal reader, I hope that this article debunked some predispositions regarding your choice of meat that you may have had.
In my next article, I will explore the journey that our meat sources encounter, including how they get processed, from the farm to our supermarket shelves.
I cannot stress more about the benefits of getting in a variety of food for optimal body function. Stay healthy and be happy.
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