It is often a real area of confusion for customers, and the public in general, as to what meats are actually classified as red meats. We understand the confusion, and always try to give our customers the information they need, which is why we've put together this article to hopefully clear this up a little.
Before we get started, it should be said that red meat is a great source of protein, vitamins and minerals, and should form part of a balanced diet and healthy life. If you weren't aware, controversial NHS guidelines relating to red meat being bad for our health, were actually scrapped following literature reviews by an international team of researchers, who found the evidence to be "weak". You can read more about that in our article 'Red Meat Claims Were a Real Missed-STEAK'.
What is Red Meat?
First of all lets get an idea of what actually constitutes as red meat. Red meat is commonly red when it is raw, hence the name, but not always. In terms of the science, red meat is actually defined by the level of myoglobin protein found within the meat. This is what can often lead to confusion, as this means that meat like pork, which is not red in colour when it is raw, is actually classified as red meat due to the levels of the myoglobin protein found within the meat.
What Meats Are Considered Red Meat?
Red Meat List
Red meats include:
- Beef (including burgers)
- Lamb and mutton
- Pork (including sausages and bacon)
Which is the healthiest red meat?
If you're looking for the healthiest red meats, you'll want to stick to the leanest cuts. Ideally meats that are less than 10% fat, such as lean beef steaks like rump, or sirloin, or lean beef mince, pork loin cuts or even bacon medallions. You might want to be more careful with meats like lamb and mutton, as these can be higher in fat.
If you are looking to reduce your intake of red or processed meats then there are several ways you could do this, including, reducing portion sizes, switching to chicken, turkey, or even fish, or swapping beef or lamb mince for turkey mince.
What kind of meat is not red meat?
Meats not classed as red meats include:
- Game birds
Is pork red meat?
Yes, although pork looks white when raw, it is actually classed as red meat due to the levels of myoglobin within the meat.