Some of the nutritional differences between red and white meat are that red meat is a richer source of iron, vitamin B12 and protein than white meat, according to WebMD. In contrast, white meat contains fewer saturated fats and more healthy fats than red meat.
Red meats, such as beef, pork and lamb, are high in saturated fats and increase a person’s risk of developing heart disease, states WebMD. Red meats increase the risk of heart disease by raising body levels of low-density lipoprotein or LDL cholesterol. On the other hand, some white meats contain omega-3 fatty acids, which can lower the risk of heart disease.
Despite these negatives, red meats still offer important nutritional benefits, states WebMD. Lean red meats are nutrient-dense foods that contain 10 essential nutrients per serving. Nutrients present in red meats include vitamin B12, important for nerve and red blood cell function, and zinc, which helps support a healthy immune system.
To maintain overall health, the American Heart Association recommends that individuals limit how much meat they consume. A recommended portion of meat for one person is 3 ounces or the size of a deck of cards. The AHA advises individuals to consume no more than 6 ounces of lean red or white meat per day.