Meat is a food that is the most widely consumed item in the whole world. It has been a part of the diet of human beings since ancient times when animals were hunted, and their meat was eaten even raw! The kind of meat people eat depends on a number of factors. Where they live, their culture, traditions, and religious beliefs are the main considerations in meat consumption.
Domesticated animals like sheep, cows, goats, bulls, and pigs are the main sources of meat globally. In some other parts of the world, camels and kangaroos are also raised for meat consumption. When wild animals like boars and deer are hunted and consumed, it is called game meat.
The meat that comes from livestock like cows, goats, lambs, and pigs is called red meat. Chicken, duck, goose, and turkey meat are referred to as white meat. The third class of meat comes from the sea and includes fish, shrimp, prawns, crabs, lobsters, oysters, scallops, etc.
Red meat is an essential source of proteins. It contains amino acids which help in the proper growth and development of your body. Another benefit of red meat is that it aids in keeping your vital organs functioning fully, and the antioxidants in red meat prevent the building of free radicals in the body.
The meat that comes from a goat or sheep is called mutton, but if the meat is of a young sheep less than a year old, it is called lamb meat. Lamb meat is healthier than other meats and contains a lot of nutrients. However, it is a little more on the expensive side.
Beef is the meat of cows, and pork comes from pigs. A deer’s meat is known as venison. All the flesh of animals and their organs like liver, lungs, kidneys, and brain are included in the term ‘meat of animals.’
If consumed in large quantities, red meat (especially beef) can be harmful to health as it causes various chronic diseases like hypertension and high cholesterol. It can also lead to harm to the heart and kidneys of a person.
Venison is the meat of a deer. It is expensive and hence not very popular. It contains minerals and Vitamin Bs, which help in the growth of a strong body. In fact, deer’s meat has more minerals and vitamins than cows’ meat, and the calories ratio is much less.
Pork meat is from pigs and contains omega 6 fatty acids and vitamin B1 and is of all meats the most popular type. It is easy to cook with a great flavor. Pork, as compared to other meats, is less costly. It boosts your immune system, and the thiamin content plays a role in protecting your heart and also maintains glucose metabolism.
Poultry or White Meat
On top of the list of poultry meat is, of course, chicken. Inexpensive and widely consumed in all the different parts of the world, chicken is extremely healthy and is a good source of essential vitamins and minerals. In particular, potassium, vitamin Bs, phosphorus, selenium, and protein.
There are hundreds of variations of chicken recipes where it can be roasted or fried; it can be used in soups, gravies, curries, and cooked with rice. Chicken nuggets and popcorn are also a great favorite of kids as well as adults.
Turkey meat is also white meat. It is less common, usually appearing during the thanksgiving and Christmas seasons. Turkey is usually roasted, but a lot of processed and unprocessed turkey products are also available in the market. The health benefits of turkey are the same as chicken but with a higher density of proteins in it.
Duck is another but much less popular source of white meat overall. Except in China, where it has gained much popularity with its special dish called “Peking Duck.” The quantities of B vitamins, phosphorous, and selenium present in duck meat are important for an immune system that functions well.
Goose meat is another white meat that has become popular not only in China but in Europe and the Middle East too. Goose meat is full of protein and other nutrients but is not easy to find everywhere.
The world’s coastal areas depend heavily upon seafood, which can include all and any form of sea life consumed by human beings as food.
If you are looking for a healthier alternative to red meat, then fish is the answer! Fish can be eaten on a daily basis without any adverse or harmful effects on your health. In India, Bangladesh, China, and Japan, people consume fish on a regular basis.
Fish is an excellent source of protein. Some common ocean and freshwater fish widely-eaten worldwide are tuna, salmon, sardines, herring, codfish, mackerel, trout, pike, and catfish.
Fish can be cut into pieces to be cooked; it can be cooked whole or as boneless fillets. You can do so much with fish – bake it, broil it, poach or saute, steam or fry, and even eat it raw. Prepare it any way you prefer and enjoy the healthiest foods on earth.
Prawns or Shrimp
One of the most popular kinds of seafood in the United States of America is shrimp. They are widely found in the sea as well as in lakes and rivers. There are a large variety of these small ten-legged crustaceans in the world.
Shrimps have a high content of proteins and are also a major source of good cholesterol. It is a healthy food as it helps the circulatory system with its lower levels of saturated fats.
It is a shellfish and one of the most popular forms of seafood in the world. The crab meat, as well as its shell, is edible. It is not only tasty but has a lot of nutrients in it.
However, it can be a bit expensive because it is easily perishable, and the fishing of crabs is a difficult and dangerous task.
It is important to include meat in your daily diet for a balanced supply of nutrients. Meat can be prepared and cooked in so many ways. Different regions of the world cook meat in different ways. Whether you want to have beef or mutton or chicken or fish, find your favorite recipe and give it a try now.