Diet Myths Busted
The Diet FItness Diva Newsletter Archives

Entries in meat (4)


I really like steak and other red meat and have it 2 to 3 times a week. Is this meat bad for me? Does it cause heart disease and diabetes?

Red meat from cows, buffalo and lamb are excellent sources of iron and zinc plus they contain complete proteins.  Harvard researchers did 20 studies involving 1.2 million people and found no association with eating unprocessed red meats and either heart disease or diabetes. However, when the meats were in a processed, refined form such as bacon, hot dogs, deli meats and packaged lunch meats, consuming them raised the risk of heart disease by 42% and diabetes by 19%.  So eating red meats or any meat for that matter in a clean, whole unprocessed way is healthy. Eating processed, refined meats of any kind is not recommended.


My friend and I are in disagreement over white and dark meat [poultry]. Which is better?

There is no truth to the notion that white poultry meat is better than dark poultry meat.

What gives the dark meat of chicken or turkey it’s darker appearance is a fairly high content of myoglobin, which provides oxygen to working muscles. Domestic chickens and turkeys don't fly but they walk a lot, therefore their leg (thigh) meat is saturated with myoglobin while their breast and wing meats are pale due to low levels of this compound.

Compared to white meat, dark meat has only a few more calories and only 2 more grams of fat per 3 ounces; hardly worth the worry.  Dark meat has more B vitamins, more zinc and more iron than white meat.

Whether you want to eat dark meat or white meat is mostly a matter of personal preference.


I eat a lot of cheese in order to get protein since I don’t eat a lot of meat. I also need to lose weight. Is this ok?

The protein in cheese is of a high quality and contains all the essential amino acids required by the body for optimum growth and cell repair. However, the downside is some cheese contains high saturated fat levels so for weight loss it would be best to keep cheese portions small. While fat is one of the macronutrients, like any other food source, if you consume more than you need, you will not lose weight. To keep the balance between weight loss and protein intake, it might be better to consume leaner sources of protein like tofu, eggs, peas, beans, lentils or select choices of fish or poultry in combination with smaller portions of cheese.  This way you will still have the cheese you love and the protein you need without consuming more fat than your body can use.


Myth: Eating meat is bad.

Meat comes in many forms. There is red meat such as beef, buffalo and lamb. There is poultry such as chicken, turkey, or pheasant. Then there is fish and seafood such as salmon, tuna, crab, and shrimp. All of these meats are good sources of complete proteins. Some fish and seafood are also good sources of omega3 fatty acids as well. Complete proteins help our bodies to repair muscle tissue, cell membranes, bones, hair, skin and nails.

Eating meat is a personal choice. People who do not eat meat need to get complete sources of protein by consuming other foods such as eggs or other dairy products, tofu, nuts and beans. If people choose not to eat dairy products, then they still need to get complete sources of protein by combining other plants that have incomplete proteins. Plants from the legume family carry the highest concentration of protein followed by nuts and seeds, grains and then vegetables. Whey is also a great source of protein.