It is the savory kind of snack that keeps you going all afternoon, but is beef jerky really healthy? The ideal salty journey food is beef jerky. It comes in a variety of tastes (homemade teriyaki jerky, anybody?) and has an extended shelf life. It is also a popular work-from-home snack since it is high in protein and also low in carbohydrates. Beef jerky, on the other hand, is much healthier. Many individuals are unsure if it is healthy. The truth is that there is not a simple answer.
Is Beef Jerky Good For Your Health?
Although beef jerky has a long list of health advantages, it also has certain drawbacks. Because of the curing process, it is rich in salt (about 18% of the recommended daily maximum) and contains 443 milligrams in one serving (about 18% of the daily suggested intake).
According to the American Cancer Society, red and processed meat like beef jerky should be avoided. That is due to the WHO has stated that eating 50g of processed meat every day (about 2 to 3 big pieces of jerky) raises your risk of developing colon cancer by 18 percent. You may be eating far more than you realize. If you eat too much red meat, you might be at risk for pancreatic and prostate cancers. In the end, beef jerky can certainly be part of a healthy diet, but it is not a daily staple.
Also Read: How Thick To Slice Meat For Jerky?
How To Find Healthy Beef Jerky
The best approach to locating healthier beef jerky alternatives is to be a food label specialist. Look for no added nitrites or nitrates; these are the preservatives that prevent germs from growing but have been linked to cancer in some cases. Then seek grass-fed, organic beef; this will provide you with more vitamins and minerals without including any extra antibiotics or fillers.
Try creating your own beef jerky if you are up for it so you know exactly what is in it. Do you have no time to make your own from scratch? These nutritious store-bought jerky alternatives are a great way to satisfy your craving.
Also Read: How To Tell If Jerky Is Done Dehydrating
Nutrition And Potential Benefits
It contains a trace amount of molybdenum, manganese, and pantothenic acid. Because it is rich in protein and low in carbohydrates, it has a better nutritional profile than other snacks and is compatible with a variety of diets, including the low carb and the paleo eating plans.
Beef jerky is also high in several minerals, including zinc and iron, which are important for a variety of purposes, such as immune and energy level support. Furthermore, beef jerky has a lengthy shelf life and is very portable, making it an ideal choice for travel, camping, and other situations where you may not have immediate access to fresh food but still require a protein hit.
Also Read: How To Keep Beef Jerky Soft
Downsides Of The Beef Jerky
Beef jerky, on the other hand, is a nutritious snack that should be eaten in moderation.
It is very high in salt, with a 1-ounce (28-gram) serving providing around 22% of your daily sodium requirement, which is 2,300 mg per day. High sodium intake can have detrimental impacts on several areas of your health, including heart fitness, blood pressure, and stroke risk. It is also a problem for certain diets that limit salt intake. Furthermore, beef jerky is highly processed. There has been evidence to suggest that eating high-processed and cured red meat such as beef jerky increases the risk of several cancers, including gastrointestinal ones.
A study published in the Journal of Food Science 2018 revealed that the dried, cured meats like the beef jerky may be contaminated with hazardous mycotoxins produced by fungi that develop on meat. Mycotoxins have been linked to cancer in studies. In a nutshell, while beef jerky is a nutritious snack, it is preferable to eat it in moderation. The majority of your calories should come from the whole, unprocessed meals.
How To Make Beef Jerky At Home
It is easy to produce your own beef jerky at home. It is also an excellent way to keep track of all of the components, especially salt. To make beef jerky at home, use a very lean cut of beef such as round the eye of round, sirloin tip, bottom round, or flank steak and thinly slice the meat. Remove the excess marinade from the sliced turkey after it is been marinated in herbs, spices, and sauces of your choice. To remove any extra marinade, pat the jerky strips dry before drying them in a meat dehydrator set at 155–165°F (68–74°C) for 4–5 hours, depending on the thickness of the meat.
If you do not have a dehydrator, you may get similar results by oven-baking the jerky at a low temperature of 140–170°F (60–75°C) for 4–5 hours. It is also a good idea to let the beef jerky sit out at room temperature for another 24 hours before sealing it up. If you are not planning on eating the beef jerky right away, it may be better to freeze it.
Also Read: How To Eat Shredded Beef Jerky
Beef Jerky Side Effects
Instant Calorie Gain: Beef jerky contains approximately 116 calories per ounce. Excess beef jerky calories, especially if they are not balanced by physical activity, almost certainly result in weight gain.
To gain a pound of fat, you must consume approximately 3,500 excess calories, therefore 30 ounces of beef jerky will suffice to gain a pound if you do not cut back on the beef jerky calories or reduce the calories from your other meals and don’t increase the amount of exercise you do.
The Bottom Line
Beef jerky is a nutritious snack food that includes zinc and iron as well as other minerals, including iron. Store-bought varieties, on the other hand, are high in salt and may be linked to additional risks; as such, they should be eaten in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Making your own jerky, on the other hand, is not difficult and can help you limit the amount of salt in it.