Summary: When it comes to calorie-dense foods, Pastrami certainly tops the list. It is a highly popular deli meat made from beef that is brined, seasoned with a variety of spices, smoked, and then steamed to create that iconic juicy cut that we all know and love. This article will delve into the calorie content of Pastrami, its nutritional benefits, and the potential drawbacks associated with its consumption.
1. The Calorie Count of Pastrami
Pastrami is renowned for being one of the most calorie-dense meats available, with one serving containing an average of 150 calories per 56 grams. This quantity can vary based on the fat content present in a particular cut of meat. Typically, the total calorie count in pastrami is derived from its high protein and fat constituent, with approximately 11 g of protein and 12 g of fat per serving.
The calorie amount in pastrami can be attributed to the method of cooking used during preparation. Smoking and slow-cooking of the beef can significantly increase the fat content of the meat. The use of brine solution while preparing pastrami also adds up calories to the final product. In general, the chopped beef used to make pastrami contains more calories than other leaner cuts of beef.
In an average deli sandwich, pastrami often gets paired with high-carb bread, cheese, and rich sauces, which elevates the calorie count even further. It is essential to keep an eye on portion size and overall diet quality when consuming this meat.
2. Nutritional Benefits of Pastrami
Pastrami is not lacking in its nutritional value, despite its high-calorie content. It is a great source of protein, zinc, Vitamin B12, and iron, all of which are essential for good health. Protein is a critical macronutrient that helps build and repair new tissues in the human body. Eating protein can also reduce cravings and keep you satisfied for longer periods.
Zinc and iron, non-heme and heme, are two minerals found in pastrami, respectively. The body uses these minerals to produce new red blood cells and promotes the healing of wounds. Pastrami also contains Vitamin B12, which is vital for cellular metabolism and nervous system function.
However, consumers should note that the high-sodium content of pastrami is not suitable for individuals trying to manage their blood pressure or people with kidney diseases. A serving of pastrami could contain up to 400mg of sodium, which is 17% of the recommended daily sodium intake.
3. The Potential Drawbacks of Consuming Pastrami
The hefty calorie count and high sodium levels make pastrami less healthy than other protein sources such as chicken or turkey. Intake of saturated fats from excessive consumption of pastrami can raise the risk of cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and type II diabetes. Watch the portion size and consider pairing it with fiber-dense carbohydrates such as vegetables rather than bread.
The nitrates present in some brands of pastrami have potential health risks. Manufacturers use nitrates to extend the meat’s shelf life and preserve its color. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) deemed processed meats as a group 1 carcinogen, which means they are carcinogenic to humans, though the degree of risk is minimal.
While occasional indulgence of pastrami can be enjoyable, people must limit their daily intake to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Pastrami is undoubtedly a delicious and mouth-watering delicacy that has a high calorie, sodium, and fat content. It is rich in several vital nutrients, such as iron, zinc, Vitamin B12, and protein. Keeping your portion sizes limited and pairing it with healthier sides like vegetables and whole grains is key. Nitrates in pastrami are also a health risk, leading to cancer development. As a treat, Pastrami can be enjoyed but should not be a regular part of a healthy diet.