Do you know what is chicken dark meat? This does not mean black on chicken. The word ‘dark meat’ in chicken refer the chicken thighs, where the white meat refers the chicken breast. The chest and thighs are the main choices when you order chicken. About the taste and texture of the meat is depending on taste. In general, chicken meat is known to be less fat than beef. Even so, between white meat and dark meat, which one is healthier?
Obviously, white meat usually has more meat than dark meat and its meat is dry and fibrous. Dark meat has more savory meats.
Dark meat has more fat and calories than the white mat. Dark meat also has nutrients that potentially help keep you from cholesterol and heart disease. Recent studies have shown that dark meat can be one of the cholesterol-free meat choices.
The study, published in the European Journal of Nutrition reveals that taurine, naturally found in poultry thigh meat (dark meat) and also in some fish and shellfish, can actually protect women from high cholesterol and coronary heart disease. Women with a 60 percent taurine intake have a lower risk of heart disease than those with the low taurine intake.
Nutritional content of chicken dark meat!
In 100 g chicken thigh (chicken dark meat), contains nutrients such as:
- Calories (kcal) 177
- Total Fat 8 g
- Saturated fat 2.3 g
- Polyunsaturated fats 1.6 g
- Monounsaturated fats 3.4 g
- Trans fat 0 g
- Cholesterol 135 mg
- Sodium 87 mg
- Potassium 277 mg
- Total Carbohydrate 0 g
- Food fiber 0 g
- Sugar 0 g
- Protein 24 g
- Vitamin A 27 IU
- Vitamin C 0 mg
- Vitamin D 7 IU
- Vitamin B6 0,5 mg
- Vitamin B12 0.4 μg
- Calcium 10 mg
- Iron 1.1 mg
- Magnesium 24 mg
In addition to the greater iron content of dark meat, compared to white meat, dark meat also has more content such as zinc, riboflavin, niacin, thiamin, vitamin B6 and B12.
On the other hand, dark meat also has more protein myoglobin, which is a substance that helps in the delivery of oxygen to muscle cells.
Vitamin A, K, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, minerals as selenium, phosphorus and zinc are also found more in chicken dark meat.
The health benefits of chicken dark meat!
The nutritional content of chicken dark meat affects the health benefits offered to the body. The following are the health benefits that provide by chicken dark meat based on their nutritional content:
All animal meats contain protein, including beef, poultry, and fish. One piece of a grilled chicken thigh (dark meat) weighing about 85 grams contains a protein of 21 grams. This is a fairly high amount of protein. With this high protein content, clearly dark meat can help your body boost immunity also provide energy for your body. In addition, protein is also very important for cell growth in the body and build muscle mass.
Dark meat contains higher calorie amount than white meat. Calories needed by the body as a source of energy and also important for children in growth because calories can help the body’s development, such as the development of brain, lungs, heart and various other organs
Dark meat has a higher cholesterol content than white meat. Although, eating foods high in cholesterol and saturated fat may increase the risk of plaque buildup in blood vessels that can cause heart disease, but the body needs cholesterol.
Cholesterol in the body provides benefits such as helping the formation of vitamin D, the body’s metabolism, strengthen the cell membrane, and even help the formation of brain cells.
The American Heart Association recommends limiting the daily intake of cholesterol by 200 mg for people with coronary heart disease.
If consumed in sufficient quantities (not excessive), dark meat will provide the benefits of cholesterol for your body without worrying about the Health Risks of High Levels of Saturated Fat and Cholesterol.
Iron is an important mineral that can help the production of hemoglobin and myoglobin. For the content of this one, dark meat has advantages over white meat. The Health Benefits of Iron for the body is to carry oxygen throughout the body, preventing anemia by aiding the formation of hemoglobin and is an important substance in maintaining the health of the nervous system (neurotransmitter).
Dark meat has a higher sodium content than white meat. Sodium is an electrolyte mineral found naturally in food. The recommended daily value for sodium is 2,300 milligrams for healthy adults and 1,500 milligrams for people with high blood pressure.
Sodium is necessary to maintain fluid balance and muscle work in the body. Although there are Health Benefits of Sodium, you need to know that if too much can cause water retention, increasing blood pressure. Read also Effects of High Sodium Level.
Dark meat has a higher zinc content than white meat. One of the benefits of zinc is to regulate immunity, treat diarrhea, affect memory, and make the vision organs healthier. The body needs zinc to help regenerate cells, act as antioxidants and is useful for optimizing the reproductive organs.
As described above, dark meat has riboflavin (vitamin B2) higher than white meat. Riboflavin is needed by the body to help metabolize the body, help the production of red blood cells, and protect the nerves.
One of the vitamin content of dark meat has that higher than white meat is vitamin B1 or that has another name is thiamin. Thiamin is needed by the body to assist cardiovascular function, improve brain function, and protect mucous membranes. Read about Vitamin B1 Benefits For Health and Pregnancy.
- Vitamin B6
Vitamin B6 in dark meat is also found to be higher than white meat. Benefits of Vitamin B6 in the dark meat is beneficial in helping enzyme activity, controlling hormones, and preventing kidney stones. Dark meat is also useful especially for women because the vitamin B6 content in dark meat will help in reducing the symptoms of PMS.
- Vitamin B12
Dark meat also contains vitamin B12 pretty high. Through the content of vitamin B12, dark meat is useful in converting carbohydrates into glucose which is the main energy source of the body.
- Amino acid
One of the health benefits of chicken dark meat is that it contains higher amino acids than white meat. Amino acids in chicken dark meat help to improve the process of detoxification of ammonia by the liver so as to improve overall health. Another important health benefits of amino acids are to ensure the balance of nitrogen needed for the smoothness of the reproductive system.
Chicken thighs (dark meat) without skin contains potassium. One of the Benefits of Potassium For Health is to help maintain the balance of body fluids and minerals thereby improving heart function and healthy muscle.
According to a new study by researchers at New York University School of Medicine, chicken dark meat has better health benefits. Nutrition called taurine is found in chicken dark meat that is beneficial to reduce the risk of coronary heart disease in women with high cholesterol. Furthermore, the taurine content in chicken dark meat is also used to help protect the body against diabetes and high blood pressure as described by the researchers.
Another health benefit of taurine is acting as an anti-inflammatory. Taurine also helps regulate blood pressure, keep nerve function healthy, help in the production of bile acids, break down fat, and others.
Considerations in chicken dark meat!
Although there are many health benefits of chicken dark meat, there are some things you should know when consuming this meat:
- Chicken dark meat has a higher cholesterol content than white meat. Therefore, you need to consume in sufficient quantities, not excessive.
- Chicken dark meat processed with fried way will increase the content of calories and fat.
That’s the benefit of chicken dark meat that you will get for your body’s health. Now that you know the facts, will you choose to consume chicken dark meat instead of white meat? Make the choice!