Think about the family traditions and habits you grew up surrounded by. For example, I was raised eating jelly on my cornbread and Jordan was raised eating syrup on his cornbread. We call our noon meal “dinner” and our evening meal “supper.” I grew up calling carbonated beverages “sody” and Jordan calls it soda. We eat PB&J with chili, some eat cinnamon rolls. See where I am going with this? Generally speaking, Jordan and I, in our adult life, still do all of the above things that we learned as children. Sure, we form our own thoughts and opinions about food, but a lot of what we learn at home, travels with us as we age, and we then pass down to our babies.
One big commonality in both Jordan and I’s childhood home is the value of eating meat as one of our main sources of daily protein. Whether it be pork, beef or chicken, meat was and still is a staple in our supper time routine.
Now, think about your normal meal time with your children. What is on your table? Is meat your main source of protein? Follow along and learn why PORK (and any meat) should be an essential part of your family meal time.
Adding a high-quality protein, like pork, to your diet, especially during stages of life where development needs are high (childhood, adolescence and pregnancy –at any age, really) offers so many health benefits.
Pork is a powerhouse and complete protein, which means it provides you will all the essential amino acids. According to the National Pork Board, a 3-ounce serving of pork is an “excellent” source of thiamin, selenium, protein, niacin, vitamin B-6 and phosphorus, and a good source of zinc, riboflavin and potassium. Often referred to as “the other white meat,” lean cuts of nutritious, protein filled pork can make you feel fuller longer.
What is considered a “lean” cut of pork? Well, I’m glad you asked. Pork’s slim seven, which include pork tenderloin, bonless top loin chop, ground pork (96% lean), boneless top loin roast, bone-in center loin chop, bone-in rib chop and the bone-in sirloin roast, are on average 16% leaner than they were 20 years ago. In addition, the “slim seven” meet the USDA guidelines for “lean,” meaning that they have less than 10g fat, 4.5g saturated fat and 95mg cholesterol per 3-oz cooked serving. Did you know that the pork tenderloin qualifies as “extra lean?” It has the same about of fat as a boneless, skinless chicken breast.
Bottom line, show your children that eating pork is not only delicious, its is safe, nutritious and affordable, too. Your favorite pork cut, cooked with love by you, may become your children’s favorite meal.
What we learn becomes a part of who we are. Remember that.
Here’s a few more helpful tips when cooking pork:
- Please, for the love of all things, don’t overcook! Cook all fresh pork cuts to 145°, followed by a 3 minute rest.
- Ground pork is the only exception to the temperature rule – cook ground pork to 160°
- Use a digital thermometer for perfectly cooked (145°) pink pork.
- Buy more pork – lean cuts of pork, like the loin are incredibly affordable and perfect choices to feed your family.