Meat and Poultry Nutrition

Posted on Posted in Poultry

Go Lean With Protein!
If you are striving to reduce fat, but love meat
and poultry, these tips may help you.

Start Lean:

✔  The leanest beef cuts include round steaks
and roasts (round eye, top round, bott om
round, round tip), top loin, top sirloin and
chuck shoulder and arm roasts.

✔  The leanest pork choices include pork loin,
tenderloin, center loin, and ham.

✔  Lean and extra-lean ground beef have less fat
than other types of ground beef. The higher
the percentage of “lean,” the lower the
fat will be.

✔ Boneless, skinless chicken breasts and turkey
cutlets are the leanest poultry choices.

✔  Many varieties of lean turkey, roast beef,
ham, and low-fat luncheon meats for
sandwiches can be used.

✔  Be adventurous: try lower-fat versions of
higher-fat favorites such as sausage,
bologna, bacon and hot dogs.

Stay Lean:

✔  Trim away all of the visible fat from meats
and poultry before cooking. Drain off any
fat that appears during cooking.

✔  Broil, grill, roast, poach, or boil meat,
poultry or fi sh instead of frying.

✔  To reduce fat and calories, skip or limit
the breading on meat, poultry or fi sh.

✔  For everyday meals, choose and prepare
foods without high fat sauces or gravies.
Instead, save them for special occasions.

✔  Savor the fl avor: choose fl avorful varieties
of higher fat favorites like sausage and
salami and use less than usual in recipes


Foods in the meat, poultry, fish, eggs, nuts and seed group provide many nutrients that are vital for the health and maintenance of your body. Many choices are available in this food group. Choosing low-fat meat and poultry options often makes it easier to eat fewer calories and control weight while still benefitting from the key nutrients that meat and poultry offer. Meat and poultry deliver not only great taste and good nutrition, but also a high level of satiety—meaning that a person gets hungry less often when consuming meat and poultry. This also helps keep weight under control. Use the Nutrition Facts label on products to select choices that meet your health needs.


Meat & Poultry: What’s In It For Me?
Lots of nutrients and other benefits! Take a look:

✔  Proteins function as building blocks for bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. They are also building blocks for enzymes, hormones, and vitamins.

✔  Iron is used to carry oxygen in the blood. Many teenage girls and women in their child-bearing years have iron-deficiency anemia. Meats are high in heme-iron—a more readily absorbable form than non-heme-iron. Non-heme-iron is found in plant foods such as spinach and beans.

✔  Zinc: is necessary for biochemical reactions and helps the immune system function properly.

✔  B Vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, B6, B12): serve a variety of functions in the body. They help the body release energy, play a vital role in the function of the nervous system, aid in the formation of red blood cells, and help build tissues.

✔  Satiety: research shows that including protein in your meals may help you feel less hungry over the next few hours. This may lead to less snacking and make it easier to manage your weight

How much protein do I need?

Here are some basic guidelines for people who get less than 30 minutes of moderate physical activity per day.

2-3 years old: 2 oz. per day
4-8 years old: 4 oz. per day
9-13 years old: 5 oz. per day
Girls, 14-18 years old: 5 oz. per day
Boys, 14-18 years old: 6 oz. per day
19-30 years old: 5 ½ oz. per day
31+ years old: 5 oz. per day
19-30 years old: 6 ½ oz. per day
31-50 years old: 6 oz. per day
51+ years old: 5 ½ oz. per day



What Counts As An Ounce? An easy way to remember a one ounce portion of meat or poultry is to think of a match box. A three ounce serving is the equivalent of a deck of cards. Here are some common portions:

1 small lean hamburger = 2-3 oz.

1 small steak = 3 ½ - 4 oz.

1 small chicken breast half, no skin = 3 oz.

1 medium chicken leg, roasted no skin = 4 oz.

2 links smoked sausage = 3 ½ oz. 2 thin slices deli ham = 1 ½ oz.

2 slices deli roasted turkey = 1 ½ oz. 1 hot dog = 1 ½ oz 3 medium slices bacon = ½ oz



Do Americans Consume The Correct Amount of Protein?

Generally, yes. USDA data show that women over 20, on average, consume 4.9 ounces of protein per day, while men over 20, on average, consume 7.1 ounces per day