Meat eaters around the world enjoy a wide selection of meats to choose from. Beef, pork, mutton, and goat are some popular ones. Birds such as chicken, ostrich, turkey, and duck are also enjoyed. There are many fish types as well as a whole range of other animals eaten. Different cuts and sections of the meat are enjoyed in different places. In some places, many enjoy most of the animal, including the organ meat, while there are many who are yet to embrace the inside parts. There are many health benefits of eating organ meats, and these are looked at in this article.
What Exactly Is Organ Meat?
Take a cow, for example. There is a wide range of cuts and pieces that can be cooked in a variety of ways. Chuck, loin, brisket, rib, oxtail, and shank are examples of some of the most common cuts. These come in different quantities, and because of the range in quality, the pricing also ranges. There is also a whole other class of meat you can get from a cow, and these are called organ meats.
Organ meats or offal are a variety of meats from the internal organs or other end parts of an animal. Some examples of these include liver, kidney, brain, pig’s feet or trotters, gizzards, and tripe, which is the intestine. Some of these are more popular in some parts of the world than others, while many cultures embrace these completely.
Before offal can be eaten, some preparation may be needed to get it ready to cook. This can be done at the butcher or at home. There are many ways to cook the different types of offal, including stewing, frying, barbecuing, and including in other dishes and pastries. Liver, for example, is popular in many dishes, including Shepard’s pie.
Health Benefits of Organ Meats
Nutritionists and health experts have highlighted the tremendous health benefits of eating the various organ meats and offal. Internal organs such as liver, kidney, heart, and brain are rich in many nutrients that can boost the health of someone who enjoys these regularly. This is because when the animals digest their food, nutrients they eat are deposited in these different organs.
Liver is important in detoxing the body. When eaten, it is one of the most nutritionally rich organ meats. It is loaded with vitamins and other nutrients. Vitamin B and iron are two examples. Brain meat is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. Organ meats are also great sources of minerals such as iron, magnesium, selenium, and zinc, as well as A, B, D, E and K vitamins. They provide a great source of protein, and to top it off, they can be very, very tasty. They are also cheaper and avoid wasting so much of the animal.
Top Concerns and Objections
Many people have never sampled offal because of lack of access or exposure to it. For many others, there is a range of concerns and objections that keep people from eating more of it. Some people do not like the taste and smell of these meats. Some types of organ meat, particularly those that form part of the animal’s digestive system may have strong smells. For others, the preparation of these foods is quite involved. Some kinds of offal like cow feet need long hours of boiling before they are ready to eat. Some other meats need extensive rinsing, bleaching, removing top layers, or even squeezing out internal fluids. Ready to eat varieties are also sold.
There are a few health concerns as well. Pregnant women and people with gout have to watch their intake. Cholesterol in organ meat has not been shown to be a health risk. Finally, people must be careful about meat during disease outbreaks, both regular cuts and offal.