It’s common to cut down on or give up eating meat when trying to lose weight but, here is the good news, you don’t have to! Meat is a great source of protein which is super important for us and can be incorporated into a healthy diet. The trick is to eat lean meat and to avoid processed meats.
Why is Protein Important?
Protein is present in every cell in the body so eating enough is crucial to repair those cells and have strong muscles. A lack of protein can lead to a loss in muscle mass and strength as well as a slow metabolism.
When exercising, eating enough protein is important to repair muscles damaged through physical activity. Muscles are made up of 80% protein and when they are damaged through exercise, that protein need to be replaced. Muscles build and get stronger by tearing and repairing. Muscle fibres in the muscles will sustain microtears when the muscle is exercised, these then heal and become stronger than before, thereby building muscle. For this recovery process to take place, it’s necessary to eat enough protein to build and repair the damaged muscles. To find out how much you should be eating, multiply your weight in pounds by 0.6. This means that if you weigh 10 stone (140 lb), you should be aiming for 140 x 0.6 = 84g of protein a day. This will vary from person to person depending on how much exercise you do.
Eating meat is an easy way to incorporate the right amount of protein, as well as vitamins such as zinc, iron and vitamin B12, into your diet. A chicken breast has approximately 54g of protein, a pork chop has 24g and a serving of ground beef has 22g. Look for good quality, lean meats.
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Swaledale butchers, are an online ‘specialist butchery team with a whole-carcass, nose-to-tail philosophy for nutrient-dense, grass-fed meat with immense flavour’ delivering fresh meat straight to your home. They have a huge range of fresh meat (never frozen) including meat boxes and a festive Christmas collection.
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We have been lucky enough to receive a meat box from Swaledale butchers with a selection of lovely meats. They come delivered in cool packaging so they stay fresh if they’re delivered whilst you’re out (ours was absolutely fine for a few hours!) and here is what we tried.
On Sunday, Caroline, Ian, Hannah, Jonny, and Poppy had roast beef. We had this with vegetables, mashed potatoes and lashings of gravy 😊. This meat was very flavoursome, tasty, and very easy to cut into. We’re looking forward to having this again as the beef makes a tasty change from chicken which is our usual Sunday lunch😊
On Monday Hannah, Jonny and Poppy had rump steak with roasted vegetables and homemade fries. The steak was cooked perfectly keeping the meat slightly rare inside. It was tender, juicy and they were very impressed with the quality of the cut given that it was rump! They are very much looking forward to trying this again!
On Tuesday Myself, Ian and Elli had a joint of lamb. I love lamb but it’s something that I don’t cook very often so I was really looking forward to trying this. I slow cooked the lamb and we had it with broccoli, carrots, potatoes and, of course, mint sauce. It was amazing. It was so delicious and tasty – I always forget how good lamb is and remind myself that I need to cook it more often!
Having tried the beef, steak and lamb, we would definitely be happy to get other meat from Swaledale butchers and will be looking at their Christmas collection boxes.
So, to summarise, yes you can eat meat as part of a healthy diet. Meat such as chicken, lamb and beef are all high in protein and red meat gives us zinc, iron and B vitamins. Make sure that you are eating lean cuts of meat to cut down on saturated fat. Incorporate meat into your diet and eat with healthy vegetables and salads.
Look forward to your Sunday lunch 😊
Caroline & Hannah xx