Four amazing health benefits of Pork

October 24, 2022

Pork is a common meat enjoyed in many countries around the world. It has become synonymous with the first meal of the day – there is nothing more delicious than some crispy Bacon for example, to compliment your eggs and toast. However, Brent Fairlie, CEO of LYNCA MEATS, one of South Africa’s leading and largest suppliers of high-quality locally manufactured Pork products, notes that Pork is so much more than that: “You can fry or braai a delicious Pork chop, enjoy a Pork schnitzel, create a mouth-watering roast, and so much more! Pork’s delicious taste is only matched by its incredible versatility!”

What’s more, is that weight for weight, Pork is by far the cheapest red meat currently on the market, says Fairlie: “The affordability of Pork is great news for consumers in these times of ever-rising living costs. In fact, it is estimated that Pork is approximately half the price of beef and a third of the price of lamb – which literally allows you to bring home more of the bacon.” However, the delicious taste and the affordability of Pork aside, Fairlie explains that adding Pork to your diet can be good for your health too. Here’s how:

A rich source of protein

Like all red meat, Pork comprises mainly protein. When cooked, the protein content of lean Pork is around 26% by fresh weight. While dried Pork, such as bacon biltong for example, boasts a protein content as high as 89%, making it one of the richest sources of dietary protein out there. Pork contains all nine essential amino acids that are essential for your body’s growth, muscles, and maintenance. For these reasons, Pork is beneficial for bodybuilders, recovering athletes, any person who is in post-surgery recovery, or who needs to bulk up or repair muscles.

Full of good fats

Good quality Pork, such as the Pork from LYNCA MEATS for example, contains incredibly high amounts of fat – it normally ranges between 10% – 16%, but it can be much higher depending on the cut and trimming levels. And the kicker is that Pork fat is good fat – it contains more unsaturated fats when compared to lamb or beef, meaning more omega-3 fatty acids. It is also high in oleic acid, which is monounsaturated fat that is readily available for use by the body.

In fact, Fairlie explains why Pork fat or lard, has been accredited as being one of the most nutritious foods that you can eat: “This is because fats are a core component of a healthy diet and essential for overall wellness. Fatty acids help with everything form immune health to supporting proper brain function. And there is a growing trend around consuming fatty food items to support weight loss. Lard is high in vitamin D, it has a high smoke point, and it contains choline, which helps fight cholesterol.”

Packed full of micronutrients

Pork is an incredibly rich source of a variety of vitamins and minerals, especially thiamine, selenium, zinc, vitamin B12 and B6, niacin, phosphorous and iron:

  • Thiamine: Pork is comparatively high in thiamine when compared to other red meats. Thiamine, also known as vitamin B1, helps to turn food into energy to keep the nervous system healthy.
  • Selenium: Selenium is an essential component of various enzymes and proteins, called selenoproteins, that help to make DNA and protect against cell damage and infections. These proteins are also involved in reproduction and the metabolism of thyroid hormones.
  • Zinc: Zinc is needed for immune function, wound healing, blood clotting, thyroid function, and much more. It also plays a key role in maintaining vision and might have effects against viruses.
  • Vitamin B12: Vitamin B12 is a nutrient that helps keep your body’s blood and nerve cells healthy and helps make DNA, the genetic material in all your cells. Vitamin B12 also helps prevent megaloblastic anemia, a blood condition that makes people tired and weak.
  • Vitamin B6: Vitamin B6 is important for normal brain development and for keeping the nervous system and immune system healthy. 
  • Niacin: Niacin is a B vitamin that’s made and used by your body to turn food into energy. It helps keep your nervous system, digestive system and skin healthy. 
  • Phosphorous: The main function of phosphorus is in the formation of bones and teeth. It plays an important role in how the body uses carbohydrates and fats. It is also needed for the body to make protein for the growth, maintenance, and repair of cells and tissues.
  • Iron: Iron is a major component of hemoglobin, a type of protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to all parts of the body. Without enough iron, there aren’t enough red blood cells to transport oxygen, which leads to fatigue.

Full of bioactive compounds

Pork also contains a number of bioactive substances, which can, among other things, help to improve exercise performance and maintain good health. These include:

  • Creatine: Helps boost brain function, fight certain neurological diseases, improve exercise performance, and accelerate muscle growth.
  • Taurine: It helps support nerve growth. It might also benefit people with heart failure by lowering blood pressure and calming the nervous system.
  • Glutathione: It is essential for the immune system’s proper functioning and is vital in building and repairing tissue. It acts as an important antioxidant, which helps protect your body from damage to cells caused by free radicals.
Pork is a Healthy, Affordable Option 1

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