Five Healthier Substitutes for Red Meat

Five Healthier Substitutes for Red Meat

Many people enjoy eating red meat and various red meat products. From steaks to hamburgers and more, red meat is a common ingredient in the average American diet. However, this type of food contains a number of nutrients that can be found in other sources that are healthier for you instead.

Red meat is an excellent source of protein and a good source of iron. However, it also contains a high percentage of saturated fat. This is the substance which makes it the most dangerous; high levels of saturated fat have led to blood clots, clogged arteries, stroke, heart attack and more. Read on for a few alternative substitutes for red meat which provide the same nutritional benefits but without the high instance of saturated fat.

1. Spinach

Spinach is an excellent source of a variety of different nutrients. It can specifically be substituted as part of a replacement plan for red meat because of the iron that it contains. While red meat contains a higher level of iron than spinach does, spinach is nonetheless quite rich in iron in comparison with other vegetables. The other benefits of spinach make it a can't-miss food item for virtually every diet.

2. Chicken

For a great alternative meat protein source, turn to chicken. Chicken breasts and other white meat are the leanest part of the bird and provide the highest ratio of protein to fat. However, dark meat chicken contains more iron than white meat chicken does, so there's value in including this meat in your regular diet as well. You'll find that both white meat and dark meat generally contain fewer calories and significantly less fat than red meat does.

3. Turkey

Turkey is rich in protein and a good source of iron as well, making it another good alternative to red meat. Turkey also contains a number of other health benefits as well, as it helps to reduce rates of cancer, improves your mood and even lowers bad cholesterol levels.

4. Tofu

For a non-meat protein source alternative to red meat, try tofu. Tofu is a great source of protein and is excellent for cooking because of its wide versatility. It can be included in a number of different dishes and can be cooked in many unique styles to make it one of the best alternatives to red meat that is available. However, keep in mind that tofu is not generally a good source of iron, so you'll need to supplement your iron through alternative means.

5. Nuts

Another non-meat protein source, nuts are a great way to get your protein requirement for the day. They will also give you many other nutrients as well. Beware, however, as nuts, such as almonds and cashews, also contain high levels of fat, although most of it is unsaturated and healthy fat. Still, monitor the servings of nuts that you eat carefully for your health.

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