An earlier post told you how much I like meat. My meat fetish has nothing to do with my previously bad eating habits which included regular takeouts of burgers and fries. If you take a good piece of meat and such a burger, take a bite out of each one, then you’ll know that the two just don’t taste anywhere near alike. And I bet you, that the medium rare steak was a whole lot juicier and tastier than the tepid burger that strangely kept you craving for more.

The meat I’m going to be talking about in this post is not nearly as close to those red meat steaks I alluded to in this opening paragraph. It’s got blood in it and, even after cutting away the exterior fat, there’s still a fair amount of it inside of the meat along with the chemicals from factory processing and the harmful bacteria. The meat I’m going to be talking about in this post is quite good for you. And it all contains one very important ingredient that your body needs, particularly when it’s exercising and needs to build muscles.

But it’s not all meat that’s packed with protein, essential for building up muscle, strengthening and sustaining it, so there is something for vegans and vegetarians to look forward to. But, again, this post is for you and me who love our protein-enriched meat. In previous years when diet fads were the thing, folks were being lambasted with stories on just how bad meat was for them. But it wasn’t the meat that was bad.

It was the quality and type of meat being consumed, and how it was being eaten. For instance, beef burgers, even those sourced from your local supermarket have next to no proteins in it. In fact there’s more processed chemicals and flavorants in it, designed to make them freeze for longer and give them some sort of flavor that’s palatable. Traditional red meat has far too much fat in it and is usually filled with bacteria.

Properly cured red meat is organic and is devoid of bacteria. It also has very little fat in it. But a better substitute for beef, and even lamb, is poultry and fish. Poultry must be sourced as free range, meaning they come directly from the farm where they’ve been fed natural foods derived directly from nature or the farm on which they are reared. There may be a lot of fat on the chicken, but fat is easy to discard from poultry.

Staying on the subject of poultry for a little longer, I’d like to raise one very important point on protein and healthy eating habits. The old adage that breakfast is the most important meal of the day still applies to today’s modern lifestyles. Ideally, if you’re healthy and fit, you’re going to need energy to replenish and sustain your body with throughout the day. Beginning with breakfast, oats has a fairly high yield of protein force for you to enjoy.

Oats tastes great with dried fruit, rich in antioxidants, and honey, and with still more protein, skimmed milk. If you’re vegan, you can take soy or almond milk instead. For non-vegetarians, eggs is still a great source of healthy protein, provided it has been prepared correctly without any unhealthy fats such as oil and butter. The healthiest egg prep to enjoy is a hard-boiled one. It is also good for digestion. You can enjoy this variation as a snack (one egg only) during your day.

I’m big on fish as an important and extremely healthy source of protein. Apart from being rich in essential protein, fish is rich in essential fatty acids called Omega 3. It’s important because these fatty acids strangely cannot be produced by the human body. How weird is that. A tuna salad is great as a healthy lunch or even supper. Raw tuna only contains good fat and the fish oil is good for you too.

There’s one sad thing to note about fish, mind you. Globally, fish stocks, mainly from the ocean, are dropping drastically. Many species of fish are now on threatened or endangered lists. This means that we can no longer eat them. Or at least, we should not be eating them. Legislation is not yet tight enough to enforce this necessary rule, so folks in general are still eating whatever they please. But you can make a contribution towards replenishing fish stocks and then sustaining them afterwards.

Reputable supermarkets and product suppliers are clearly labeling their packed (tinned or fresh) fish, marking them accordingly. The labels reveal the status of the fish, whether it’s threatened or thriving. This, however, smacks of double standards. What are threatened stocks doing on supermarket shelves in the first place? People are also desensitized and still being conned into believing that it’s still ok to eat the fish if it’s on the shelves.

Protein helps you to lose weight. No discussion, no debate, it’s that true. High protein requires work to digest, metabolize and process. During the process of consuming protein enriched meat, you burn off more calories as opposed to carbohydrates which cause you to pick up weight if you’re not active. Also, it takes a lot longer for meat to leave your stomach, leaving you with the impression that you’re not going to be hungry for a while and subsequently won’t be rushing off to grab another bite to eat.

The hard data is coming through thick and fast and although I’m always going to love my meat, I’m never going to knock strict vegans. They have good reasons for avoiding meat, and we should respect them for that. Also, they’re going to be okay, because they’re getting enough protein in their vegan diets in the form of a variety of nuts, legumes (beans, peas, chickpeas), tofu and natural soy. But good luck to them on that.

I’m off to grab a steak. Wanna come with?