With all of the known benefits of eating meat, some people are still hesitant to make the switch from vegetarian meals to ones that include lean meat and chicken. Some people have ethical concerns with consuming meat, and cultural stigmas can make it difficult for some to cross over to the meat eating side, but the benefits of eating meat are numerous.
Meat is one of the best ways to get the protein that we need in our diet. Unlike vegetarian food, meat contains all of the essential amino acids that our bodies need. Red meat contains high amounts of iron, which is a concern in the vegetarian diet. A lot of non-meat eaters suffer from iron deficiency in their diets because they are not getting the essential amino acids, iron and protein that are found in meat.
In addition, meat has a high phosphorus content that is much easier for the body to absorb than in some vegetarian foods. In foods such as legumes and cereals, the phosphorus content contains phytic acid that has to be processed before it can be absorbed by the body, with meat the phosphorus can be absorbed directly.
So how do you know which meats to consume and which to avoid? Lean red meats, chicken and lean cuts of pork are good choices. You want to limit your intake of processed meats such as lunchmeats, salami and bacon. Although meat can be full of healthy nutrients and a great way to get the protein and iron that our bodies need, you do want to limit your intake of meat as it can be very high in cholesterol and too much is hard for the body to process. Remember also to choose lean meats and chicken when possible and avoid meats with a heavy fat content.