Beef often gets a bad rap, largely due to its saturated fat and cholesterol content. Eating foods high in either of these compounds can impact your blood cholesterol and blood pressure, which can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attack and stroke. Beef, especially lean cuts, can provide you with a number of vitamins essential to your health.
The most prevalent vitamins found in beef are B vitamins. A 4-ounce serving of beef provides almost 50 percent of your daily recommended value of B12. It also provides just over 25 percent of your daily recommended value of B6. You find niacin and riboflavin, two additional B vitamins, at just under 25 percent of your daily recommended value in the same serving of beef.
According to the Office of Dietary Supplements, B vitamins are known to help maintain your metabolism, immune system and blood glucose levels, form healthy red blood cells and hemoglobin and combat fatigue, diarrhea, constipation, memory loss and anemia.
Another essential nutrient found in beef is zinc. A 4-ounce serving of beef provides you just over 40 percent of your daily recommended value of this trace mineral. Like B vitamins, zinc is known to help maintain your immune system, explains the Office of Dietary Supplements. It also helps form protein and DNA within your body, heal wounds and sustain your senses of smell and taste.
Right around 40 percent of your daily recommended value of selenium can be found in a 4-ounce serving of beef. This trace mineral is an important component to selenoproteins, which act like antioxidants in the body and prevent free radicals from damaging healthy cells. Damaged cells are known to contribute to heart disease and cancer, so selenium may help lower your risk of these conditions.
Beef is also rich in iron, providing you with almost 25 percent of your daily recommended value in a 4-ounce serving. Iron helps build the proteins and enzymes needed to maintain your overall health, while facilitating the transport of oxygen and regulation of cell growth. It's also known to combat fatigue, poor concentration and anemia.