Lamb, a staple in many Mediterranean diets, offers a myriad of health benefits. This red meat, which comes from sheep less than a year old, is considered by many to be the most nutritious type of meat readily available in worldwide markets. Lamb helps increase your vitamin, iron, zinc, calcium, and potassium intake. Lamb isn't nearly as popular in the United States as it is in other countries. On average, an American eats less than one pound of lamb annually.
Lamb is loaded with iron and calcium, which help the body produce new red blood cells and keep existing cells oxygenated. Iron wards off anemia and reduces tiredness and fatigue. An iron-rich diet also helps fight insomnia.
Iron also boosts the immune system and makes the body more resistant to disease. Zinc, also found in lamb, is an essential part of wound-healing and helps prevent the contraction of virus-borne infections. Zinc also improves our ability to smell and taste food. Lamb provides nearly 30 percent of the recommended daily allowance of zinc.
Lamb contains an ample supply of omega-3 fatty acids, including alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). These nutrients can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. They also reduce bad cholesterol levels, help fight auto-immune diseases, ward off depression, and can even prevent mental disorders and memory loss.
Some studies have found conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a substance found in abundant quantities in lamb, can help reduce the risk of breast cancer. Though more research is needed, lamb is considered one of best red meats to eat for one's health.
Want to look younger and help prevent wrinkles on your face and elsewhere on the body? Add an extra serving of lamb to your diet. The omega-3 fatty acids in lamb contain antioxidants, which help prevent wrinkles and age spots and give your skin a youthful glow.
Those looking to take off a few pounds may also benefit from eating lamb. Although relatively high in calories, lamb may boost the metabolism and help the body burn calories more efficiently. The meat also provides a good deal of protein. So, there's no reason to feel guilty about those lamb chops for dinner.
The high amount of protein in lamb helps build, tone, and maintain strong muscles. Add this to the metabolism boost, and lamb ranks as a great option to increase energy for workouts and other physical pursuits. Studies show eating lamb can also help preserve muscle mass in older people.
Lamb doesn't just promote good muscle mass, but it can also help muscle performance. Beta-alanine, an amino acid found in lamb, helps the body produce carnosine, a substance essential for muscle performance. In addition, beta-alanine helps reduce fatigue and improve stamina. For this reason, lamb is a go-to meat for athletes.
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Zinc, selenium, and phosphorous, minerals found in large quantities in lamb, help preserve bone density and prevent the onset of osteoporosis. Eating lamb has also been shown to promote good joint health and help reduce inflammation and pain associated with arthritis, lupus, and other autoimmune diseases.
Folic acid is yet another significant compound in lamb. The nutrient is responsible for preventing neural tube and spinal cord defects in newborns, and preventing anemia, promoting good health heart, warding off depression, and combating free radicals in both adults and children.
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