Beef. It’s what good for you. Or so the commercials used to tell us. Then all that unpleasantness about cholesterol and saturated fat slipped out and everyone got scared and started cutting back on their beef consumption. Then the vegetarians got involved and, even worse, the vegans and, well, beef just didn’t have the cache it once had. The truth is that beef can be bad for you, but the cholesterol and saturated fat is just part of the problem. Much of what’s wrong with beef has to do with the hormones that the agricultural industry shoot into cows as if they were going for the Major League Baseball home run record. Adding beef to your diet in proper amounts can actually be beneficial to your body and extend your health and life. A lot of the positive and negative aspects of beef in your diet depends on the particular dish that is providing the beef.
Beef stroganoff is one of those fancy schmancy beef dishes you’ll find in upscale restaurants so it probably comes as little surprise that stroganoff isn’t necessarily the most healthy of beef dishes. The way that beef stroganoff is prepared usually means a fairly high amount of fat content. Add to the high fat content an unusually large amount of sodium to achieve ideal flavor. Those with gout should definitely avoid beef stroganoff since one of the ingredients of beef is purine. An additional health concern is the potential for mold in the mushrooms used in beef stroganoff. On the upside, if you are seeking a high protein diet, the beef stroganoff should become a regular part of your meal plan. Stroganoff is also usually high in iron.
Corned Beef Hash
If you had to pick the poster boy for why beef isn’t necessarily what’s good for you, you couldn’t do much better than choosing corned beef hash. When it comes to beef dishes in your diet, few provide quite the high amount of fat that you will find in corned beef hash. Making matters even worse is that most of the fat in corned beef hash is of the saturated variety. Another problem with corned beef hash and one even more of a tricky proposition than beef stroganoff is sodium. Expect to ingest genuinely Herculean amounts of sodium when you eat corned beef hash. On the other hand, those suffering from iron deficiencies could not do much better than placing corned beef hash on the menu. Since iron has properties that can help fend off infections and fatigue, those suffering from these ailments would do well to eat corned beef hash in moderate amounts.
The facts are these when it comes to beef liver: you pretty much can’t find any other food that will provide as much vitamin A, B12, zinc and iron in one serving. On the other hand, beef liver can be murder on those looking to avoid cholesterol. If you are looking for a low cholesterol diet, then avoid beef liver like the plague. Also keep in mind that the liver is an organ capable of filtering and collecting all those chemicals and hormones shot into beef to make it taste better. The best way to get around this downside to liver is to stick with young calf liver rather than going with the liver an older animal.
The best things about eating ground beef is that you will get a healthy supply of zinc and B vitamins, especially B12. Ground beef is also a good alternative for potassium among those who just don’t like the whole bananas thing. The important thing to keep in mind when eating ground beef is that you want to purchase the leanest selection possible. That means sticking with ground round over ground chuck.
When it comes to eating beef, few things in life are more precious than a beautifully marbled ribeye steak at an affordable price. The great thing about adding ribeye steak to your beef diet is that you win a more than adequate supply of protein, as well as a nice helping of iron, zinc and vitamin B12. The downside to this beef choice is that the tastiest morsels are high in fat. Eating too much ribeye steak if you already are big consumers of steak and beef based deli meats could potentially increase your risk for rectal cancer if you are a man.