Could eating more fresh lean pork boost your heart health?
A recent study from the Nutritional Physiology Research Centre at the University of South Australia, asked that very question. Could eating more lean fresh pork improve body composition and reduce cardiovascular risk factors?
It may surprise you to discover that lean pork has the same nutrient profile as lean beef. It’s packed with thiamine, niacin, vitamin B12, and zinc.
Pork even increases thermogenesis which improves weight loss, by increasing the amount of energy you expend over your resting metabolic rate.
Intervention studies have shown that higher protein diets, can improve cardiovascular disease risk factors, improve glucose sensitivity, and reduce risk for type II diabetes, lower blood pressure, and help keep you fuller longer.
The Australian study followed men and women aged 18-65 over a six month period. The participants were asked to eat 7 servings (men) and 5 servings (women) of pork per week for six months, with no real change in their levels of physical activity.
The study found that the pork eaters’ body composition was improved compared to the controls (non-pork eaters’), and the increased consumption of saturated fat did not affect their cardiovascular risk factors.
In fact their resting energy expenditure rate increased. It seems that the amino acids found in pork protein helped increase thermogenesis.
So, if you think pork isn’t as nutritious as other meats, think again…why not put some pork on your plate tonight?
Get started with our delicious and healthy dinner recipe below.
Healthy Dinner Recipe: Delectable Smoky Pork Chops, Roasted Radishes, & Cherry Pecan Green Beans
How to Make Perfect Pork Chops for a Healthy Dinner
- 2 Bone-in pastured (organic) pork chops (1 per person)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin coconut oil
- Smoky rub
To make the smoky rub:
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried onion powder
- ½ teaspoon crushed white pepper
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- Pat pork chops dry thoroughly
- Rub smoky rub all over both sides of pork chops and let sit for 10 minutes
- Heat stainless steel pan or cast iron skillet, let pan get searing hot
- Add in coconut oil
- Place both chops in pan, press down well and cook for 4 minutes uncovered (don’t move or touch chops)
- Flip and cook for 4 more minutes on the other side
- Turn off heat and let sit for at least 3 minutes until firm to the touch and done.
Radishes are usually found rolling around on crudité plates, often ignored. Radishes are low in calories, full of gut balancing fiber, and can even relieve bloating and indigestion.
It’s time to show this underappreciated member of the cruciferous vegetable a little love and let it shine on your dinner plate.
We promise you’re going to adore the depth of flavor this detoxifying vegetable reveals when it’s roasted.
- 1 bunch (12-15 whole radishes)
- 1 tablespoon ghee (Learn how to make your own ghee here!)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- Wash and dry radishes
- Slice radishes in thin disks
- Melt ghee and drizzle over radishes, combine well so all slices are covered
- Spread radishes in a single layer on cookie sheet
- Bake for 30 minutes or until golden
- Season with sea salt and pepper
- Transfer to a bowl and serveServes 4
Pro Cook Secret Tip: When roasting vegetables like radishes, mushrooms, peppers, or onions, don’t salt the vegetables before roasting. You won’t get a nice golden color if you do.
Salting the vegetables before only causes them to release their moisture, giving you soggy veggies instead of delicious caramelized vegetables.
Cherry Pecan Green Beans
Everyone loves green beans, especially tiny people who tend to throw fits about eating vegetables. This tasty spin on a classic side dish will have everyone wanting more.
These green beans will be tender but have a little crunch to them, which I always prefer. If you like yours a little more on the softer side, cook for a couple minutes longer.
- 1 pound green beans, trimmed and washed
- 2 shallots thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove thinly sliced
- ¼ cup pecans chopped
- ½ cup of dried sour cherries
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- Crushed black pepper & sea salt
- ¼ cup water
- Sauté shallots in olive oil with a little salt in a deep saucepan. Cook until translucent.
- Add in pecans and cherries, sauté for two minutes on medium high heat.
- Add green beans and garlic, sauté for two to three minutes while stirring continuously.
- Stir in water. Cover pan and let steam for another two minutes.
- Stir in the vinegar, mix well, transfer to a bowl, and serve.Serves 4