Although it's important to ensure your plate is loaded with vegetables when you sit down for a meal, don't feel you're harming your health if you enjoy the taste of meat. As with most types of food, it's best to consume certain types of meat in moderation, but a diet that includes this rich source of protein can be well-rounded and healthy.
Benefits of Meat
Meats such as beef, chicken and fish provide a complete source of protein, which means they offer all the essential amino acids. Meat is also high in iron; a 3-ounce serving of lean beef chuck, for example, has 3.2 milligrams of iron. Specifically, the iron found in meat is of the heme variety, which is easier for your body to absorb. The iron in nonanimal products is nonheme. Eating meat also provides a source of vitamin B-12, which contributes to your body's cell health.
Focus on Lean Cuts
Many cuts of meat are high in saturated fat, but it's possible to find lean options to include in your diet. Poultry is lean in general, but if you enjoy beef, you can make health-conscious choices. Choose lean ground beef, such as 93/7, for example, rather than 80/20 ground beef. When cooking steaks, trim away the bulk of the fat before cooking. If you enjoy pork, tenderloin is the leanest cut.