Some people find it difficult to tell if pork is white or red meat. Its pale look before and even after being cooked is a major reason some people consider it white meat. Media campaigns in the late 80s also created this impression. These are the reasons it is considered white meat. But how true or not is this?
Just like meat sources like beef and lamb, pork is red meat regardless of its color. Nutrition-based studies and reports from institutions such as the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) validate this. Keep reading this Meat Abolition Nutrition study for evidence on why pork is red meat, rather than white meat.
Why Is Pork Red Meat?
Despite its pale color when compared to red meats like beef and lamb, two major pieces of evidence point to the fact that pork is red meat:
Raw and processed food from non-fowl mammals is considered red meat. As with lamb, venison, boar, and beef; this makes pork red meat as well. On the contrary, fish and poultry animals (like chicken and turkey) are white meat.
When it comes to telling white meat apart from red meat, the myoglobin content is the primary decider. Going by this, pork has a high amount of this iron-rich protein that contributes massively to the red color of the meat.
White meats contain myoglobin, but in low amounts compared to red meats. The myoglobin you get from the consumption of pork is a lot more than what you get when you eat white meats like chicken, turkey, and fish.
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Should You Be Eating Red Meat?
Red meat can make up a part of your diet. This is because it is rich in certain nutrients needed for healthy living. B vitamins, iron, thiamine, selenium, and zinc; are among the nutrients it contains. However, it has to be in moderation as a high intake of red meat will increase the risk of:
- Obesity – because it has a higher amount of calories
- Diabetes – which makes ending up with cardiovascular disease more likely
- Spike in blood pressure level
- Spike in cholesterol level
- Cardiovascular disease
- Colorectal cancer
These are just some of the adverse health possibilities if more red meat than ideal is consumed. So, it should be consumed moderately for healthy living.
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Nutritional Content of Red Meat
For every 200 grams of pork loin, the average nutritional content is:
- 52 grams of protein
- 384 calories
- 17.6 grams of fat – Saturated fats account for around 5.6 grams of fat
It contains no sugar or fiber. Eating this composition of nutrients is fine as long as it is moderate. Some studies show that eating around 70 grams a day is fine. However, people highly susceptible to stroke, heart failure, and high blood pressure and/or cholesterol; are advised to avoid red meat as much as possible. This is because it can trigger these adverse health conditions.