Grilling is very nice. As they chat and the children play, the steak sizzles. Best of all, you’re doing something nice for your loved ones. Because there are many good nutrients in meat. Preparation tips, tables and useful information at a glance:
1. Quantity matters
Eating meat in moderation is important for a healthy and balanced diet. The German Nutrition Society (DGE) recommends these amounts per week:
300 grams for Adults with low calorie needsup to 600 grams for Adults with high caloric needs.
For classification: A portion of meat can weigh from 100 to 150 grams. “Anyone who needs a large grilled steak weighing 250 grams or more should also go meatless more often,” advises DGE nutritionist Antje Gahl.
2. Lose weight despite having a barbecue: this is how
If you pay attention to your figure, you should eat lean meat and save on fatty marinades. “Along with beef, poultry is very low in fat, especially turkey breast. But only if you leave the skin out,” says Gahl.
The fat content of 100 grams of chicken breast is without skin with about a gram of fat, with skin in about five grams of fat.
This shows that the fat content does not only depend on the type of meat, but also on the cut. There are big differences.
Y: Fat content alone says nothing about how many calories a piece of meat has. Because meat contains a lot of protein: One gram has about four calories, Gahl explains.
So a high-protein meat can be high in calories despite being low in fat, Gahl sums up. If you want to eat healthy, you should not only pay attention to calories.
3. Find the right cut of meat
“Lean cuts of meat cook faster,” explains Axel J. Nolden of the German Butchers Association. However, the following also applies here: “The leaner a piece of meat is, the drier it can become.”
Advice: “A good compromise might be a pork chop, for example, if you trim off the fatty edge when eating,” says Gahl.
The fat content is around 16 grams, without the fatty edge it is even less. “The chops don’t have as many calories either, but sensorially it’s not a completely dry piece,” he explains.
4. These Nutrients Make Meat So Valuable
Meat is very valuable as a source of energy for you and your loved ones. It contains, among other things, vitamins, iron and, of course, protein. The body needs this, for example, to regularly renew its cells and build muscle.
People are particularly good at making their own body protein from animal protein, explains Gahl. Minerals like iron, zinc, and selenium are also found in meat.
“As a component of antioxidant enzymes, selenium, for example, protects the body from cell damage caused by free radicals,” says Gahl. Zinc also has an antioxidant effect.
Here are the key nutrients in detail:
Protein: The protein content varies a lot. “Poultry is very high in protein: there are about 24 grams of protein in 100 grams of turkey,” says Gahl. Lean beef has around 22 grams of protein and leg of lamb has around 19 grams per 100 grams.
B12 vitamin: “This vitamin is not actually found in plant foods. Therefore, the body can only meet its needs through foods of animal origin such as meat, fish, milk, dairy products and eggs,” explains nutritionist Gahl.
B1, B2, B6: According to the Federal Center for Nutrition (BZfE), these B vitamins, along with B12, are important for the formation of red blood cells, as well as for nerves and muscles and for the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates and proteins.
Iron: This mineral is the building block of the red blood pigment and helps the body form blood. Iron is also important for oxygen transport. Red meat, such as beef or lamb, contains more red blood pigment.
“Animal iron is easier for the human body to use than vegetable iron. Since plant-based iron is bound to secondary plant substances, among other things, it is much more difficult for the body to absorb and use it,” Gahl explains.
On the way: As so often, everything is a matter of the correct dose. Excessive zinc intake combined with insufficient copper intake can affect copper absorption. According to the DGE, copper has a role in protein metabolism, which can lead to anemia.
But don’t worry about your family’s well-being: As a general rule, you can’t reach too high intake values through diet alone. In addition to nutrient preparations, toothpaste, mouthwash and adhesive creams can contribute to it.
5. How to gently grill meat
Grilling is a very low-fat type of preparation. Furthermore, according to the BZfE, nutrients are preserved more than by boiling, roasting or braising. “If you want to preserve the ingredients, you should only grill the meat for a short time,” Gahl recommends.
It is important that you cook poultry and pork very well. “Depending on your taste, beef and lamb can also be slightly bloody or pink,” says qualified butcher Axel J. Nolden.
The roasted flavors are good, but don’t let the meat burn. “It’s not enough to scrape off what’s burned,” says Gahl. You should cut out the dark, burned areas. To avoid this, you should place the grill at a higher level and distribute the charcoal so that the food is not directly on top.
When grilling, you should avoid smoked and cured meats like Kassler, Wiener sausage, or bockwurst. “Because this meat contains nitrine salt to cure. Excessive heat, for example when grilling, can lead to the formation of nitrosamines, which were found to be carcinogenic in animal experiments,” warns Gahl.
To avoid harmful substances that accompany the meat, you should also make sure that when grilling, you do not drip grease on the embers, on the charcoal or on the heating coil. “For example, rub in the marinade well beforehand,” advises Gahl.
“The thicker a piece of meat is, the longer it should be on the grill, depending on how well done it is,” explains Nolden. Alternatively, you can cook the meat slowly and gently in the smoker.
Advice: A roasting thermometer can tell you if meat is cooked through: It measures the core temperature in the middle of the meat.