Beef, especially grass-fed beef, is one of the most nutrient-dense proteins. Beef is actually the meat of cattle. It is sometimes categorized as red meat. Beef has an excellent micro-nutrient profile. Grass-fed beef is packed in B vitamins, L-Carnitine, Iron, Carnosine, zinc and omega-3 fatty acid. Beef contains essential vitamins and minerals.
People from different cultures and religions process and consume beef in various ways. We often eat beef as ribs, roast or steak. We can find a beef ground or minced. The patties we eat with burgers are mainly ground beef. We can also buy processed beef from the store. They came in the forms of corned beef, beef jerky, and sausages.
Grass-fed beef is slightly distinct from conventional beef, which is sometimes referred to grain-fed beef. Grass-fed beef is the meat of cattle that are fed grass. On the other hand, conventional beef is from those who are fed grain. This is the most basic difference between grass-fed beef and grain-fed beef. Grass-fed beef is more nutrient-rich than the conventional one. The fatty acid it contains is a brain-boosting nutrient that is vital for your brain development. Grass-fed beef is more expensive, but you cannot deny its health benefits.
Must Know Facts about Beef:
- The most common type of beef is the meat of cows. But beef can also refer to the meat of lamb, pork, veal, goat and kangaroo.
- People have been consuming the flesh of cattle from prehistoric times. It is the third most widely consumed meat in the world, accounting for about 25% of meat production worldwide.
- The word beef came from the French word ‘Buef’. Buef means cow meat. Beeves is the plural form of beef but rarely used.
- People from most Indic religions do not appreciate killing cows or consuming cow meat. Beef is the meat of both cow and Buffalo. However, Hinduism only prohibits cow meat (known as Go-Maans in Sanskrit).
- Beef is the most common source of lean protein. To help meet our protein recommendations, we should eat beef daily. But one should not consume beef more than approximately 4 ounces of total meat per day.
- Grass-fed beef is healthier than grain-fed beef for its immunity and anti-inflammation benefits. Grass-fed beef is richer in nutrients like antioxidants, vitamins, and a beneficial fat called conjugated linoleic acid.
- Grass-fed beef tastes more flavorful and natural. It is more tender and juicy than its conventional counterpart.
Top 10 Health Benefits of Beef:
- High in Protein: Beef is the most powerful source of high protein as a 6oz (170g) portion of 80% lean beef provides 46g protein. The amino acid it contains is a must for anyone who wants to build his or her muscle mass. Beef is also important for muscle growth and muscle repair. Amino acids (proteins) are the first condition to build our bones, skin and cartilage. Beef can also help one lose weight because protein discourages food cravings.
- Contains Fewer Calories and Fats: Cattle on grain-fed source develop more fat tissue than grass-fed animals. Beef from grass-fed cattle is lower in total fat content which can save you 16,642 calories a year. So, a small reduction in fat content can save you from a large number of calories each year. While grass-fed beef contains lower calories, it is a source of healthier fats.
Beef on grass-fed contains six times more Omega–3 fatty acids than conventional beef. This element reduces heart diseases. Lowering bad cholesterol, Omega-3 fatty acid makes arterial more elastic. It plays a vital role in the development of cell membranes in the brain’s neurological system. It cures a variety of diseases associated with inflammation.
- High in L-Carnitine: Another nutrient beef provides is L-Carnitine. Beef is the best dietary source that has L-Carnitine in high amounts. This is a type of amino acid that helps those trying to gain a target weight. It plays an important role in transporting fatty acids into the mitochondria, where they can be burned for energy. It helps to lose unwanted pounds and lose weight fast. In fact, this nutrient helps to keep diabetes under control. This amino acid is also important for creating muscles.
- Contains a good amount of Glutathione: Glutathione is an important antioxidant that is highly present in Beef. Grass-fed beef contains more Glutathione than grain-fed beef. Commonly known as Master Antioxidant, Glutathione keeps your natural aging at bay and helps you have a longer life. Glutathione helps to counteract free radicals that contribute to aging and some skin diseases. Some research shows that Glutathione can prevent the progression of cancer.
- Rich in Minerals: Beef is rich in some essential minerals like zinc, iron, magnesium, potassium. Zinc is an important element for body growth and maintenance. Zinc provides a healthier immune system. Vision problems like macular degeneration, cataracts, and night blindness can be prevented by consuming a good amount of zinc every day. Beef is a great source of heme iron that can prevent anemia. Pregnant women should eat a good amount of meat because beef’s iron helps fetal brain development. Another benefit of adding lean beef to the daily diet is that it contains magnesium and potassium. Magnesium is important for the growth of muscles and bones, while potassium plays an important role in metabolisms.
- High in B Vitamins: Beef is a powerhouse of B vitamins like B12, riboflavin, niacin (or B3), folate, thiamin, B6, and pantothenic acid. B vitamins help to convert food to energy. It forms healthy red blood cells. This element is sometimes good for mental health, as it minimizes depression. Animal-derived foods are the best dietary sources of vitamin B12. So, beef provides a lot of vitamin B12 that affects blood formation and the brain and nervous system.
- High in Vitamin D: Meat is generally a rich source of vitamin D. We cannot deny how beneficial vitamin D is for our bones and teeth. It also contributes to a healthier immune system and nervous system. Containing a good amount of Vitamin D, beef reduces the risk of multiple sclerosis and heart diseases. It also helps reduce our likelihood of developing the flu.
- Rich in Acid Linoleic: The amount of fatty acid that beef contains is very low, but it has a good amount of synthesized linoleic acids. This element boosts immune function and reduces the chances of cardiovascular diseases. It protects bone density. It may also promote healthy skin and hair.
- Contains Carnosine: Beef is one of the greatest sources of Carnosine. Containing anti-glycosylation properties, Carnosine reduces the harms of glycation. It may support people with obesity and/or prediabetes or diabetes. This is also a mandatory element to prevent lipid peroxidation within our cells.
- Provides Creatine: Another important advantage of consuming beef is, it provides a sufficient amount of Creatine. It drastically improves high-intensity exercise performance. Being the world’s most effective supplement for adding muscle mass, it speeds muscle growth. Creatine is also helpful to fight some neurological diseases.
Nutrition: Per 100 Grams of Lean Beef Contains:
- Calories: 254 kcal
- Carbohydrate: 0 g
- Fat: 16.17 g
- Saturated fat: 6.16 g
- Monounsaturated Fat: 7.19 g
- Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.47 g
- Protein: 25.25 g
- Vitamin B12: 104% DV
- Niacin (vitamin B3): 29% DV
- Vitamin B6: 19% DV
- Choline: 15% DV
- Riboflavin (vitamin B2): 13% DV
- Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5): 11% DV
- Thiamin (vitamin B1): 3% DV
- Folate: 2% DV
- Vitamin E: 1% DV
- Vitamin K: 1% DV
- Zinc: 57% DV
- Selenium: 37% DV
- Phosphorus: 14% DV
- Iron: 14% DV
- Potassium: 6% DV
- Magnesium: 5% DV
- Copper: 9% DV
- Sodium: 3% DV
- Calcium: 2% DV
- Manganese: 0.5% DV
Types of Beef:
The list below describes some of the most popular varieties of beef:
- Brisket: Brisket is an enormous chunk of boneless beef that comes from the breast part. For having a high amount of collagen, or connective tissue Brisket beef is tough to cook. It has to be slow-cooked to be tenderized.
- Chunk: Chunk is a type of beef that comes from a cow’s shoulder, arms and neck. Chunk is not very tender, as it has a lot of connective tissues in it.
- Flank: Flank is a kind of meat that comes from behind the belly of a cow. It is flavorful and more tender.
- Foreshank: The meat from the front legs of the cow is called a foreshank. It is low in fat and it is full of muscles.
- Loin: The meat from the cow’s back area is the loin. It is the tenderest type of beef.
- Rib: This type of beef is very tender and expensive.
- Round: This is the lower back of the cow. Meat from the round is very tender and tasty.
- Short Plate: It is the nearest part of the cow’s belly and ribs. Short Plate contains tough and fatty meat.
Risk of Consuming Too Much Beef:
- Beef Disturbs Our Digestive System: Beef is low in fiber and tough to digest. When we consume too much beef, there will be less space for food rich in fiber. So, consuming too much beef can lead to constipation. Beef keeps arachidonic acid in our body and causes inflammation like a stomach ulcer.
- Beef Increases the Risk of Cancer: Consuming too much of processed meat can cause cancer. Beef contains dioxin that affects body cells which are the potential for increasing the risk of cancer. Meat also contains animal protein, saturated fat, and heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. All of these elements can increase the chance of getting cancer.
- Beef Increases the Chance of Heart Diseases: Beef contains saturated fat. Consuming a lot of saturated fat can raise blood cholesterol. Excessive cholesterol can develop various types of heart diseases.
- Beef Facilitates Development of Diabetics: According to a report of the American Diabetes Association, people who consume excessive animal protein are 22 percent more likely to develop diabetes. Saturated fat and trans fats present in beef may increase the risk of diabetes type 2.
- Beef can Lead to Obesity: Consuming too much beef can make it harder to lose body weight. It increases BMI and causes early obesity.
Some Best Ways to Eat Beef:
- Roast Beef: Roast beef is the most common and famous dish all over the world. An earnest lump of brisket and rib of beef is perfect for the roast. First, you need to rub the beef with some oil, herbs, and seasoning. Place the beef in the oven and roast it at 160°C (320°F). Roasting at a high temperature makes the beef juicy, tender, and mouth-watering.
- Grilled Beef: Beef such as ribs, cutlets, slices of the fillet, rib-eye, porterhouse, strip loin and sirloin, are perfect for cooking grilled beef. First, you must pre-heat the oven at 180°C (350°F). After seasoning the beef with some pepper and garlic, place it into the oven. To avoid burning and losing the juices, turn the beef once halfway.
- Braised Beef: It is a gentle and slow cooking process of beef. You will need some braising liquids like Beef stock or broth, red wine to simmer the meat. You can add some finely minced carrot, onion, and celery. First, brown the meat on all sides in a large oiled pot. After browning, remove the meat from the pot and keep it aside. Put some braising liquid in the same pot and add some vegetables. When the braising liquid is gently shimmered, return the meat to the pot and cook it until the meat is tender.
- Beef Sauces and Stews: To make this dish you need to coat the beef with a mixture of flour, salt, and pepper. After coating, brown the beef in an oiled pan. You can also add some aromatic vegetables of your choice. Then cook it in a 160°C (325°F) oven for about 1½ hours with enough liquid to cover the meat.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Beef:
Question: Is beef a cow or a bull?
Answer: Beef is the meat from both steers (castrated males) and heifers (females that have never been bred). Bulls are generally bred for breeding purposes and cows are for producing milk and calf rearing. Steers are mainly bred for meat. Some heifers which are unsuitable for breeding are also used as beef.
Question: Can we eat beef every day?
Answer: Red meat is overall very nutritious. But some study proves that eating red meat daily can increase the rate of heart diseases. Consuming too much processed meat is associated with an increased risk of heart diseases and diabetes.
Question: What does beef mean?
Answer: Beef means meat. The word beef comes from the French word ‘buef’, which basically means cow meat. On the other hand, beef is also a word for complaint. If you have a beef with someone, it means you have an objection.
Question: Is beef banned in India?
Answer: Under the current trade laws of India, the export and import of meat of cow, oxen, and calf is prohibited.
Question: Is red meat bad for weight loss?
Answer: Health experts have been demotivating us to eat less meat for years. But a lean cut of beef like steak is not bad for your waistline. It provides more protein with less fat and helps you to lose weight.