Beef – more than just delicious

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WRITTEN BY: KARINE BARLOW, RD

Do you remember learning about healthy eating in grade school? Variety, moderation, a balanced plate, 4 food groups…nutrition used to be so simple!

Fast forward to 2017 and today’s nutrition conversation seems so much more complex. We talk about omega-3’s, the virtues (or sins?) of coconut oil, avoiding sodium and trans fat, we debate the merits of butter versus margarine, plant-based eating, Mediterranean diets, functional foods, probiotics – the list goes on!

So how does beef stack up nutritionally? You might be surprised. Take a look at the infographic below that looks at a selection of good-for-you nutrients found in beef and other foods that have been in the nutrition ‘spotlight’ of late.

Beef delivers a powerful nutritional punch that is unique and should not be dismissed. All the foods illustrated are healthy in their own right, and beef belongs with these nutrition stars. For example, while almonds contain fibre and beef does not, beef is certainly more protein dense than almonds. You would need to eat 3 ½ servings of almonds to get the same amount of protein you would get in 1 modest portion of beef. And while salmon contains omega-3’s, it’s just not very high in iron. One portion of beef gives you the same amount of iron as 6.5 servings of salmon. Vitamin B12, essential for nerve and brain health, is plentiful in beef, but much less so in chicken. And eggs, while compact, nutritious and delicious like beef, fall short on zinc, an essential nutrient required for literally hundreds of functions in the human body.

Keeping up with the latest nutrition trends can get your head spinning. And arguably, we’re not helping people eat healthier with all this complicated nutrition talk. Mother Nature has given us a basket of foods for a good reason. Leaving foods out because we’re told that one food is ‘better’ than another is misguided and nutritionally short-sighted. It’s good to know that beef makes the grade.  High in all kinds of nutrients, lean when trimmed of fat, and moderate in calories. Beef not only tastes great, but certainly stacks up nutritionally to the stars of the day. What is a superfood anyway? Think beef.

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