Its a common notion that eating meat- chicken, fish, etc.. can make you gain weight. But is it really true. We’ll tell you whether its really true or not.
Meat is primarily composed of two basic nutrients- protein and fat. The good news is that meat is high in protein. The even better news is that some meat sources are loaded with fats that are good for your heart. The not so good news is that some meats do contain artery clogging saturated fat.
Protein in Meat
Wonder why protein is good for you? Protein is the basic ingredient used to maintain and grow muscle in your body. Compared to fat, muscle uses up more energy to maintain itself. That means, the more muscle you have, the higher your metabolic rate. The higher your metabolic rate, the more calories you burn, even while you sleep! Lean meat like grilled chicken breast (skinless) is a great protein source. While all meat contains protein, not all meats are the same when its comes to their nutritional value.
Fat Content in Meat
On to the fat in meat … the leanest meat source is skinless chicken breast, with almost negligible fat. Have it grilled in olive oil. Grilled tandoori kebabs with chicken are good sources of lean meat (skip the butter rub). Avoid curried and deep fried meat items as they’re potentially loaded with oil and fat.
Heart Healthy Fat in Meat
The fat in fish like sardines, salmon, rohu are rich in omega-3 oils and are heart healthy. Numerous studies have shown that consuming these fish leads helps improve health & even leads to muscle gain and improved weight management. Countries with high consumption of these fish are known to have people with longer life spans. In fact, human brains are primarily composed of omega 3 based fats. And Omega 3 oil foods are good for healthy hair. If you’re a vegetarian, you could get your omega 3 from fish oil supplements.
The Unhealthy Fat
Mutton (lamb), beef & other red meat can have high amounts of saturated fat. If you’re going to have them, go for lean cuts. Lean cuts of beef are loaded with iron, muscle building protein and is one of the best sources of muscle building creatine!
What else is there in meat
Meat products like sausage, ham, salami, hot dogs and cured meats are not only loaded with saturated fat, but also with high levels sodium and preservatives. So besides clogging your articles, the high sodium content in these foods also causes water retention, bloating & heart conditions like high blood pressure. Note, that primarily eating meat in your diet can be unhealthy.
So in conclusion, eating meat does not make you gain weight, but eating unhealthy meat loaded with saturated fat can. Eating lean meat can help you gain muscle! But remember, there is only so much protein your body needs, that range from 0.8 gm per kg to 1.5 gm per kg. So, control your meat consumption. And always remember to balance out your meat consumption with lots of fruits and vegetables.
If you’re vegetarian, then you should know that protein from plant sources may not be enough to build muscle. If you’re vegetarian and would like to get toned or build muscle, you could supplement your diet with a whey protein supplement.- Articles, data, text, image or video content posted on this site is checked by the Fitho team of nutritionists & fitness experts, or by research/studies, and opinions are based on our wide experience in helping thousands of people get fit, lose weight & manage their health.